Most people in this country seem to have a love/hate relationship with lamb. I personally, am not typically a fan—I’d never order it on a menu and I very rarely prepare it at home—but it really depends on the cut and how it’s prepared. Let’s just say that I have an open mind about lamb, but I’m not generally impressed.
I remember a few years back my husband’s stepmother prepared a lamb and aubergine (eggplant) tagine for dinner during a visit back to the UK. I was anxious the entire day...these were two ingredients that I Did. Not. Like. But I also didn’t want to be rude, so I took a big gulp of wine and a timid taste. It was glorious. I couldn’t stop eating it, and even had a second helping.
So, I’ve learned not to judge. Which is why I was fairly easily convinced that serving a rack of lamb would be an excellent centerpiece for a holiday dinner. And it’s true. This dish is definitely impressive.
Be sure to purchase the best quality, ideally grass-fed, lamb that you can source and from a reputable butcher. This is the time to lay down the bucks, especially if you are cooking a special dinner. Look for deep red color, and ask your butcher to “French” the ribs, which means that the tops of the rib bones are cut and exposed.
Sear the lamb until you get a nicely browned crust and then finish it in the oven until it is perfectly medium-rare (or medium, but don’t go further than that). The addition of an herbed butter and plenty of garlic adds great flavor to the succulent meat as well.