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Uncle Julian’s Herb-Encrusted Lamb Chop with Balsamic-Blueberry Sauce

Chef Ben Kramer,
Lux Solé

The first note is sweetness, then the aromatic herbs touch the palate. The distinctive lamb shines through and subsides as the blueberries return for a lingering finish. To pay homage to Uncle Julian and his produce, Chef Ben has named this dish after him. The milder Manitoba lamb is more adept at complementing flavours.

Ingredients
­Lamb and Herb Crust
4, 3-4 oz. lamb chops
2 Tbsp butter
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 Tbsp fresh thyme, chopped
1 Tbsp fresh basil, chopped
2 Tbsp flat leaf parsley, chopped
1 cup bread crumbs
salt and pepper to taste

Sauce
1 1/4 cup fresh blueberries
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup water
1 cup thinly sliced white onion
2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
2 Tbsp unsalted butter
2 Tbsp fresh mint, finely chopped
1 Tbsp olive oil

Method
Herb Crust
1.  Combine thyme, basil, parsley and bread crumbs in food processor until it forms a paste. Set aside.

Lamb
1.  Heat oven to 400˚F.
2.  Season lamb with salt and pepper.
3.  In an ovenproof, non-stick skillet, over high heat, heat olive oil near smoking point. Sear lamb until golden brown.
Turn over and press on herb crust.
4.  Place pan in oven. Cook until medium rare, approx 5 min.
5.  Transfer to a plate and cover.

Sauce
1.  In a small bowl, macerate blueberries with sugar.
2.  In heated saucepan, sauté onions with olive oil until golden brown.
3.  Add 1 cup of berry/sugar mixture, water and vinegar. Heat to boiling, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat and simmer for 3 min.
4.  Add salt and pepper to taste, then add butter and mint, stirring until butter has melted. Remove from heat.

Assembly
1.   Place lamb on warmed plate. Add the reserved fresh berries to sauce and spoon over lamb.

Yield 2 servings

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