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These lamb chops are impressive enough to serve at a dinner party but quick enough to make on a weeknight.
There are restaurants – I visited one last week – that still serve old-school, extra-green mint jelly with lamb. Some people very close to me wouldn’t think of eating their lamb chops without it. For all of them, mint jelly it is. But for those of us who might want just a little update, something fresher and brighter that doesn’t have a shelf life, here is a Minty Gremolata to enjoy alongside our lamb.
Traditional gremolata is a rough chop of parsley, garlic and lemon. It’s the classic accompaniment to osso bucco, as it cuts the rich veal shanks with a hit of freshness. It’s also served often with grilled meat or fish for the same reason. With a little bit of mint, though, it becomes a super-fresh version of the mint flavor we grew up expecting with lamb. But even better, because the mint gets balanced by the garlic and parsley, brightened by the lemon, resulting in an all-around crave-able relish.
Don’t be put off for a second about making lamb chops on any given night when you want a good dinner that doesn’t require hours in the kitchen. This is the easiest thing in the world to make and can truly be thrown together in less than 30 minutes. It’s also impressive-tasting enough to serve at a dinner party.
1 cup finely chopped Italian parsley
1/2 cup finely chopped fresh mint
1 garlic clove minced (or grated on a microplane)
¼ teaspoon salt (you might add a bit more if you like)
1/8 teaspoon pepper
Grated lemon zest from 1 lemon
1 tablespoon olive oil
Combine all the ingredients and let the gremolata sit while you cook the lamb chops.
8 1 ½ inch thick lamb chops
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon pepper
Olive oil to coat a cast iron skillet
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Sprinkle the lamb chops all over with salt and pepper. Heat about a tablespoon of olive oil in a cast iron skillet over medium-high heat. Add the lamb chops and cook for about 3 minutes on each side, just until they are browned (don’t move them while they are browning). Transfer the skillet to the oven and roast the lamb chops for about 12 minutes for medium-rare. Remove the skillet from the oven, tent the skillet with foil and let the lamb rest for another 10 minutes. Serve with Minty Gremolata generously spooned on top of the lamb chops.