This week I’d like to show you my recipe for one of the most famous of dishes in fine dining – the rack of lamb.
Made famous by the French in the early 19th century, it was a pioneer for fine dining. Nowadays, the rack of lamb is ‘Frenched’ – taking the fat off the meat and giving it a nice clean finish.
There are some people who still use the frilly paper on the end of the bones, but it’s a choice that’s completely up to you.
To get the best out of your lamb, you need to source your meat. You’ve probably gathered by now that I only buy meat from Buckwell’s in Southsea as John and the team do a tremendous job. If you ask them nicely, they will trim the bones for you.
The key to cooking the lamb is to make sure you render the fat down on the back of the rack, so when you put it in the oven it won’t come out underdone or raw.
The rendering will also maximise the flavour of the lamb.
I have made burnt butter mash potato to go with it, which I use in the restaurant at the moment. It takes my already creamy smooth potato and adds an extra layer of savouriness to the mash. I’m very fond of it.
Due to the unseasonal weather, there is an abundance of broccoli now. It’s one of my favourite vegetables so I’m quids in. It’s lovely to use sprouting broccoli and give it a quick blanch. It’s a perfect match with the lamb and mash.
Kevin Bingham is the chef patron of Restaurant 27 at Southsea (023) 9287 6272.
ROASTED RACK OF LAMB WITH BURNT BUTTER MASH
Ovenproof frying pan
Ingredients per person:
One three-bone rack of lamb
6oz peeled potato, diced evenly
Splash of cream
Four to six stems of sprouting broccoli
Boil the potato in slightly salted water until tender. When cooked, drain and leave to cool for 5 minutes.
Crush with the potato masher and force through the sieve with the back of the ladle into the microwavable bowl.
Place 3oz of the butter into a saucepan and cook until golden, then pour over the potatoes. Add a splash of cream if needed and season.
Cook in the microwave for one minute. Whisk and cook again for one minute, then check the consistency and leave to stand.
Place the frying pan over a medium heat and pre- heat oven to gas mark six. Add a splash of olive oil to the pan and cook the lamb fat side down for two to three minutes. Turn over and cook for 30 seconds, and season on all sides. Place into the oven fat side down for 16-18 minutes (this will be medium).
Leave to rest for 15 minutes. Meanwhile, bring to boil a saucepan of salted water and then place in the broccoli. Cook until tender.
Carve the lamb into three cutlets and dress the plate with mash potato, broccoli and lamb.
Use the cooking liquor and the remaining butter to make a rich dressing.