I know what you're having for dinner. The lamb has finally arrived. Asparagus is also in season now so you might consider paring it with a nice soup.
Lamb is not my favorite meat, I'm more of a grown cow girl. So for me to recommend a lamb dish says something. When done properly, lamb is basically the food of the Gods. So let's eat some, shall we?
Courtesy of Thomas Keller.
2 8-bone racks of lamb (2 to 2 1/4 pounds each), with the bone end cleaned, or "frenched"
1/4 cup Dijon mustard
3 tablespoons honey
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
4 cloves garlic, pureed in small food processor
3 to 5 anchovy fillets, salt packed or oil packed, rinsed, dried, and minced (I leave this out because I would rather die of consumption than touch an anchovy)
1 1/2 cups dried bread crumbs or ground panko crumbs
3 tablespoons finely chopped flat-leaf parsley
1 tablespoon minced rosemary
Gray salt or coarse sea salt
Score the fat covering the lamb in a 1/2-inch crosshatch pattern. Don't cut into the meat! I'm not sure what would happen if you did, but people seem really fucking serious about it. Season the racks on all sides with salt and pepper.
Heat some canola oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat until it shimmers.
Then put 1 rack fat side down in the pan and sear until golden brown, 1 1/2 to 2 minutes; carefully move the lamb as it sears to brown as much of the fat as possible.
Transfer the lamb to the roasting rack (set inside a roasting pan), meat side up. Drain off the fat, reheat the pan, adding fresh oil, and sear the remaining rack.
Combine the butter, garlic, and anchovies (again, I leave those out but YMMV) in a small food processor and purée until smooth.
Transfer the purée to a medium bowl and stir in the bread crumbs, parsley, and rosemary to combine. Do not overmix; the mixture should be moist, but it may not all come together.
Combine the mustard and honey in a small bowl and brush mixture over the fat and meat (do not coat the underside of the racks). Spread the bread crumbs evenly over the racks, pressing gently and patting them so the crumbs adhere.
Position an oven rack in the bottom third of the oven and preheat the oven to 425ºF.
Put the lamb in the oven, with the meat side toward the back, and roast for 25 to 35 minutes, until the temperature in the center of the meat registers 128ºF to 130ºF (or cut a little into it and make sure it's pink).
Let the racks rest on the rack in a warm place for about 20 minutes for medium-rare.
Sprinkle with sea salt and serve.
Up next: I'm going to try to hunt down my mother's mashed potato recipe. It was so unhealthy (read: fattening) that she hid it away so we would stop requesting/making it. She's out of town so I plan on turning her place upside down until I emerge victorious and well fed.