Perhaps it’s the Island and the Country in me, but there’s hardly an animal I won’t eat. Except pork. I don’t dine on the swine, however I know that it’s tasty so I try to avoid even smelling it at all costs. Recently I ate some extremely succulent Rabbit, I love fried Venison (deer meat), and I will sell half of my soul for some Oxtails from Island Cafe in Atlanta. I eat it all. One of my favorite meats is Lamb. My Gran prepares a lamb roast every year for Christmas with mint jelly and it’s probably what I look forward to the most. I love lamb. Lamb Lollipops, Lamb Roast, Rack of Lamb, Lamb Chops. That is what I am going to offer up for you today!
There are several different types of lamb chops and most often you will see the rack of Lamb cut into individual rib pieces. I love it that way, but lamb is expensive and for about 1 lb you’ll be paying around $18 at your local market for a rack. No bueno. Instead, here in Ohio at the North Market I purchased 1 1/2 lbs of Lamb Chop from the arm for about $13. Still steep, but worth it for more meat. Plus it’s still a tender cut. Depending on where you live you will have to go to specialty butchers or markets for Lamb meat (as well as Goat, Bison, etc). Bigger cities with more diverse populations will have cheaper and more varied selections. Dig around!
So here is my recipe for Lick Your Lips Lamb Chops. I hope you enjoy it! They can be made right in the skillet so cooking time is a breeze!
Prep Time: 2 hrs. Cook Time: 12 mins.
What you’ll need:
- 1 1/2 lbs (about 4 pieces) Arm Lamb Chops (You can use this recipe for other cuts, just vary the time)
- 1 cap-full White Vinegar
- 1 1/2 Cups Water
- Sea Salt
- Fresh Ground Pepper
- Seasoning Salt (Basically, good savory seasonings)
- Mint Leaves (Chopped)
- Minced Garlic (Bottled or Fresh)
- 2 TBLS of Canola Oil (My preference)
- Marinating Dish
To take the gaminess out of the Lamb, especially if this is the first time you or your guest has had lamb, place the lamb in a shallow marinating dish and add the water mixed with the vinegar. Allow that to sit for about 1 hour.
Once the lamb has marinated in the vinegar and water, drain and season with your dry ingredients. Sometimes when I’m using a thicker cut like a Rack I make tiny slits in the meat to put small pieces of garlic inside. It’s amazing. In the case of the arm, I just liberally apply my seasonings, including the mint, then I add my garlic and stack the lamb on top of each piece that way the garlic is in touch with all sides and it’s pressed tightly. Cover and allow to sit in the refrigerator another hour.
When the lamb has finished relaxing in the seasonings, remove them from the fridge and set aside while you heat up your skillet. Add the oil and heat over medium heat. Wait until the skillet is fully hot before you add the lamb. Because this cut is thinner it will cook fast, but you want it to cook properly and evenly. So you have to slow it down by cooking over a lower heat setting.
Add the lamb to the skillet and for medium rare (my preference) cook for about 6 minutes on each side. If you like it more done (and effectively tougher) add about a minute to each side for each level of doneness. If you like it well done, you might as well not even waste money on buying such an expensive meat.
Once done, plate the lamb and allow it to rest, sprinkle with parsley flakes and serve alongside your desired sides. If you happen to find some mint jelly at a local store I suggest that with it as well! The lamb should be extremely juicy and full of flavor!