Roasted Rack Of Lamb With Oregano Pesto

We have an oregano plant in the garden that’s getting a little out of hand, so I decided to make some oregano pesto. Nothing goes better with oregano pesto than lamb.

For whatever reason, people get intimidated by roasted rack of lamb. They envision a Passover/Easter feast with mint jelly and overly-complicated, old-world side dishes. It doesn’t have to be that way. Rack of lamb is just the ovine equivalent of the pork chop. Who’s intimidated by pork chops?

Oregano Pesto

  • 3 Handfuls Spinach
  • 2 Handfuls Oregano
  • 1 Handful Parsley
  • 3 Tablespoons Parmesan
  • 3 Tablespoons Pistachios
  • 2 Garlic Cloves
  • Olive Oil (+/- 4 Tbsp)
  • The Juice from 1 Lemon, Divided
  • Salt & Pepper To Taste

Roasted Rack of Lamb

  • 1 Rack of Lamb
  • 1 Clove Garlic
  • 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
  • Salt & Pepper To Taste

It’s just the two of us, so I got a small rack of lamb. Since the pesto packs a punch, you just want to trim the fat and lightly season the meat. Cut the garlic clove in half and rub the cut end all over the meat. Sprinkle on some salt and pepper, press it into the meat, and drizzle on a little olive oil. While the oven preheats to 450°, brown the rack over medium-high heat on the stove top in an oven-safe pan.

When the meat has a nice sear, place the rack bone-side down and cover the bone tips with foil so they don’t burn. Put the pan in the middle of the oven.

After about ten minutes, check the internal temperature with a thermometer. 140° is the magic number for medium-rare. I overshot it a little and ended up with medium.

When the lamb is finished cooking, let it cool on a warm plate under tented foil.

To make the oregano pesto, you should roughly chop everything before dropping it into the food processor so there aren’t any unusually large chunks of any one ingredient.

Next, you toss everything (but only the juice from half of the lemon) into a food processor and drizzle some olive oil through the hole in the lid until the whole mass starts to move. Season to taste with salt, pepper and the juice form the other half of the lemon. I like my pesto pretty chunky, so I try not to process it for too long.

If you’re wondering why this isn’t called spinach pesto, it’s because the oregano flavor overwhelms everything else. The spinach and parsley are there to water it down, so to speak. The pesto will keep in the fridge for about a week and taste better every day.

After the lamb has cooled for 5-10 minutes, cut the rack into individual chops and dress with the pesto. Next time I’ll French the bones. If I was a “foodie,” I’d decorate them with those little, white, chef hats. But then again, I’m not a foodie.

I served this with some Bulgur-Stuffed Bell Peppers.

Roasted Rack Of Lamb With Oregano Pesto
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