Friday, March 11, 2011

Friday Feast!

As spring approaches, a new season of lovely pastured meats begin to make their way to our tables. This recipe of mine was a favorite in Primal Cuts and, since I’ve been looking forward to getting my first lamb of the year from my farmer friends near Portland, I am happy to pass this on to you wonderful lamb lovers.

Tea and Plum Roasted Rack of Lamb and Spring Salad

with Grapefruit Vinaigrette

2 racks of lamb, frenched
2 tbs Earl Grey tea leaves
1 cup strongly brewed Earl Grey tea
1.5 tbs 5-spice*
1/4 c. and 2 tbs. plum chutney or jam
kosher salt as desired

1 tsp sichuan/szechuan peppers--berries of prickly ash
1 tsp. star anise
1/2 tsp cinnamon or cassia bark
1/2 tsp cloves
1 1/4 tsp fennel seed
1/4 tsp white pepper

For the best flavor, let this marinate for 4-12 hours. Sprinkle salt, tea leaves and 5-spice powder onto racks and rub in. Place racks and loose tea/spice mixture into shallow container. Cover and refrigerate.

When ready to prepare, set oven to 500 degrees F. Remove lamb from fridge. Pour on chutney and spread all over rack. Set racks bone side down on a baking sheet. Allow lamb to warm at room temp while oven preheats. In a small dish mix brewed tea and chutney, set aside. Once preheated, place sheet into oven for exactly 8 minutes. At that time, immediately turn oven down to 325 degrees F. Open oven and brush or pour about 1/3 of glaze on racks. Return to oven and allow racks to roast for 8 to 12 minutes. Check for desired temp:

rare-135 degrees
medium rare-140 to 150
well done -165

Glaze rack with remainder of tea/chutney mixture immediately after removing from oven, then allow racks to rest a few minutes before cutting. Cut between every second rib bone, each rack should yield 4 of these double chops. Serve with a fresh and acidic side, like this Spring Citrus Salad.

handful of spring salad mix (arugala, frisee, baby lettuces)
2 heads radicchio, julienned
4 heads baby bok choy, julienned
4-6 kumquats, very thinly sliced
1 cup very fresh snow or sugar snap peas, trimmed and bisected diagonally.

1 pink grapefruit, zest and juice of
1 blood orange, juice and pulp
1/4 c olive oil
2-3 tbsp. white wine vinegar
1 shallot, finely diced
1/2 tsp. ground white pepper
kosher salt as desired

In medium bowl, whisk together olive oil, vinegar and citrus juices. Once emulsified, add pepper, grapefruit zest and shallot, whisk to incorporate, adjust acidity to your liking by adding more vinegar then salt as desired. Place rinsed salad greens in large salad bowl. Add rest of ingredients and vinaigrette, toss.

I can hardly wait for next Friday's post, with recipes and interviews with a very special BG charter member! Monday brings another Meet The Butcher’s Guild post!

Have a great weekend!

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