Sunday, March 4, 2012

Crown Roast Lamb aka Rack Of Lamb

"A rack of lamb or carré d'agneau [though this may also refer to other cuts] is a cut of lamb cut perpendicularly to the spine, and including 16 ribs or chops. At retail, it is usually sold 'single' [sawn longitudinally and including the 8 ribs on one side only], but may also be sold as a "double rack of lamb", with the ribs on both sides."

"Two or three single racks of lamb tied into a circle make a "crown roast of lamb". Crown roasts are sometimes cooked with (ground-lamb) stuffing in the middle."

"Rack of lamb is often "frenched", that is, the rib bones are exposed by cutting off the fat and meat covering them. Typically, three inches of bone beyond the main muscle (the rib eye or Longissimus dorsi) are left on the rack, with the top two inches exposed."

"Rack of lamb is usually roasted, sometimes first coated with an herbed breadcrumb persillade. Persillade is a sauce or seasoning mixture of parsley [French: persil] chopped together with seasonings including garlic, herbs, oil, and vinegar."

"In its simplest form, just parsley and garlic, it is a common ingredient in many dishes, part of a sauté cook's mise en place. If added early in cooking, it becomes mellow; but when it is added at the end of cooking or as a garnish, it provides a garlicky jolt. It is extensively used in French and Greek cuisines, as well as in Cajun, Louisiana Creole, and Quebecois cuisines."

"The simplicity of the basic combination invites variations, either by adding other ingredients or substituting other herbs, such as bay leaf, oregano, basil or tarragon, for the parsley. Combined with bread crumbs, it is used as crust for roasted veal or lamb chops. The addition of lemon zest creates gremolata, a traditional garnish for braised lamb shanks. Anchovy is a common addition in Provençal cooking. A small amount of olive oil is often added to persillade to make it easier to work with."

"The tips of the bones are sometimes decorated with paper frills resembling chefs'
Crown Roast Lamb Photo by thejustifiedsinner at Flickrtoques. The toque most likely originated as the result of the gradual evolution of head coverings worn by cooks throughout the centuries. Their roots are sometimes traced to the casque a meche [stocking cap] worn by 18th-century French chefs."

"The colour of the casque a meche denoted the rank of the wearer. Boucher, the personal chef of the French statesman Talleyrand, was the first to insist on white toques for sanitary reasons. The modern toque is popularly believed to have originated with the famous French chefs Marie-Antoine Carême and Auguste Escoffier."

From wikibooks Cookbook

Crown Roast Of Lamb Recipe

2 racks of lamb, trimmed and frenched
2 tbsp thyme, finely chopped
1 tbsp rosemary, finely chopped
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Olive oil
1 1/2 tbsp smoked paprika
1 tbsp garlic powder

Brush both racks with olive oil. Sprinkle with paprika, garlic powder, and kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper. Rub herbs into flesh. Place both racks in a bundt pan and tie end bones together with butcher's twine. Place on the middle rack of the oven and cook for 30 to 35 minutes, until the meat reaches an internal temperature of 145° for medium rare. Remove and let rest 10 minutes. Serve.

Editor's Note: my tweak for this recipe would be to use a breadcrumb stuffing instead of the ground lamb stuffing.

Text Credit: Wikipedia || Wikipedia || Wikipedia || wikibooks Cookbook
Image Credit: Flickr

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