Friday, May 29, 2009

Dijon Crusted Lamb Chops

Dijon Crusted Lamb Chops
By: Chef Cristian

These succulent lamb chops have been such a success for me that I feel almost ashamed to give away their secret - which, really, is just their simplicity. Of all the dishes I have ever made, (and as a chef, I have made MANY) these lamb chops have never failed to satisfy my guests, and I continue to receive rave reviews on them regularly.

You can serve this dish as a beautiful appetizer or a stunning main course. And I have have also served these as hot appetizers at cocktail parties with a spicy Dijon dip. The frenched bone makes them very easy to pick up and eat with your hands!

Yield: 4 Portions

- 2 Racks of Lamb (Frenched - Meaning that the bones have been scraped of meat and skin and are exposed)
- Red Wine (I use Shiraz for this recipe)
-3 Sprigs of Fresh Rosemary (bruised - meaning that you hit the plant with the back of a knife to bruise them)
- 4 Cloves Fresh Garlic roughly chopped
- 2 Cups Italian Breadcrumbs
- Dijon or Meaux Mustard (also known as whole grain mustard)
- About 1 cup of Olive Oil (you may need more)
- Horseradish (optional)

As with all of my recipes, the first step is to prepare all of you ingredients and have them ready to go! This could mean mixing, chopping, pouring, cutting, dicing - you get the idea.

Step 1.
Cut the rack of lamb into individual chops and marinade them in the wine, Rosemary and garlic. Add enough wine so that the chops are covered. I like to use plastic bags to marinate instead of bowls because I find that the marinading liquid is in much closer contact with the meat. Marinade anywhere from 1 hour to 4 hours.

Step 2.
In a bowl, combine the breadcrumbs, Dijon mustard and olive oil. If you like, you can add horseradish to this mixture, but this is up to you. Mix thoroughly. This will be your crust, so make sure that it is moist enough so that when you press the mixture into a spoon with the palm of your hand, it sticks together and doesn't easily crumble apart.

Step 3.
Pre-heat the oven to 400 degrees. Lay the individual chops on a baking sheet lined with non-stick aluminum foil. Scoop a heaping spoonful (using a regular soup spoon) of the breadcrumb mixture onto a spoon and compact it by squeezing with the palm of your hand around the spoon. Then transfer the crust from the spoon onto one lamb chop and press it into the lamb with your hand so that the top side of the lamb chop has an oval layer of Dijon crust on it. Repeat this for each lamb chop.
Step 4.
Roast lamb in oven for 15-20 minutes (depending on how well done you like your lamb). Take out of the oven and transfer onto a platter, appetizer dish of main course according to how you will be using this versatile dish!


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