Wednesday, December 8, 2010

An unfussy-to-make rack of lamb

Rack of lamb. It sounds so elegant, so fancy – and fussy to prepare.
   I've found a recipe, though, that I didn’t find at all difficult to make, and it worked beautifully.
   Pistachio-Crusted Rack of Lamb (click for the recipe) from Bon Appetit magazine is delicious. It would be a tremendous main dish for a dinner party.
   I envision it sitting grandly in the table’s center, surrounded by glasses of bubbly and happy faces.
   Racks of lamb can be a bit skimpy, though, so if you’re making this recipe for more than four people, you may want to increase the recipe accordingly, or make sure you have side dishes in abundance.
   I could only find small racks of lamb at the supermarket, and so prepared two small to equal the one large (2 ¼ lbs) referenced in the recipe. I found frozen racks of lamb at Superstore in Canada, and defrosted them according to the package directions.
   The recipe calls for unsalted pistaschio nuts. This means shelled pistachios without salt. I could only find salted shelled pistachios and so I used those, and the recipe didn’t taste salty.
   Here’s how the rack of lamb is prepared:
   Pomegranate juice, dried currants and garlic are boiled in a skillet until the liquid is syrupy. The liquid is transferred to a processor, and chilled butter, cinnamon and cumin are added and the mixture chopped until a coarse purée forms. The processor bowl is put in the freezer for 10 minutes to slightly firm the butter.
   The rack(s) of lamb are placed bone side down on a baking sheet lined with foil. The pomegranate butter is spread on the racks, and chopped pistachio nuts and panko (Japanese breadcrumbs – look for it in the bakery or the Asian foods section of the supermarket) is pressed into the rack(s) to adhere.
   The rack(s) are roasted in the oven at 400 F for 30 minutes, then left to rest for 10 minutes. The lamb is cut between the bones, and served drizzled with any juices from the foil.

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