Barbequed Southdown Lamb Chops with a Warm Salad of Wilted Lettuce & Garden Tomatoes
Living above my last restaurant had its advantages, not least a pretty quick commute to work each day but I always missed having my own outside space. I finally moved home earlier this year and one of the first things I did was to plant every available space in my new garden with herbs, pea shoots, various root vegetables, salads, alliums & tomatoes, hoping that this ‘clusterbomb’ approach might offset my relative inexperience at home gardening. By some miracle of nature, everything has grown & started to come to fruition- I’m writing this recipe, the first I’ve written in a long while, sitting in my Garden in the July sunshine on a rare day off. The ingredients are essentially all either from my garden or various larder ingredients that I’ve had in my cupboard since Entropy closed its doors last summer, so kind of thrifty you might say… Also, the lamb chops are from our small flock of Southdown lambs on our family farm in Yorkshire. Southdowns are a native rare breed from which the more famous New Zealand ‘Canterbury’ lamb is descended. They are on the watch list of the Rare Breeds Survival Trust but they are becoming increasingly popular as a breed amongst small scale producers as they are relatively easy manage, taste amazing and they look kind of cute too J
So a simple, seasonal summer recipe to try at home, I hope you like it!
8 Lamb loin chops
A dozen or so cherry tomatoes, halved
Small jar of marinated artichokes, drained
4 baby gem lettuce
For the Marinade
200ml olive oil
4 Cloves of garlic
1 Bunch thyme
4 sprigs rosemary
1 tbsp black peppercorns
Anchovy & Lentil dressing
1 small tin anchovy fillets
1 Tbsp capers
100g lentils, soaked & then cooked
1 tbsp chopped parsley
1 tsp chopped onion shoots (or chives)
1 tbsp Dijon mustard
1 red onion, finely chopped
175ml olive oil
75ml white wine vinegar
First make the marinade by stripping the herbs from their stalks and then blending all the ingredients in a food processor until you get a smooth, verdant oil. Smother liberally over your lamb chops and leave refrigerated until you are ready to BBQ
To make the dressing whisk together the mustard and vinegar & slowly whisk in the oil to create an emulsified vinaigrette. Add all the remaining ingredients and stir well to get a fresh salsa like dressing.
Barbeque the lamb chops over hot coals- you could chuck on the rosemary stalks, or perhaps some applewood chips if you like. Cook to your liking and then season & ‘rest’ off the barbeque for 5 minutes before serving.
Use a smoking hot griddle pan to quickly char & blister the tomatoes & artichokes.
To preserve the colour, don’t wilt the gem lettuce until you are ready to serve. To do this, simply pick off the leaves into a large pan of simmering boiling water and cook for a minute or so until just softened. Drain & season.
To assemble, arrange the wilted lettuce, tomatoes & artichokes onto a serving board or dish, place the barbecued lamb on top & dress with loads of the briny tangy dressing. Read More