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Recipe of the month: February

Asian BBQ lamb rack, Szechuan jus, mint mustard, purple sprouting broccoli and crispy potato gratin



Serves 2-4


Notes:


The best part about this recipe is that it is adaptable. The lamb marinade could easily be transferred to any cut and be cooked over hot coals on the BBQ. This adds a great smoky flavour and a caramelised char to the lamb fat. It may seem like it is a hard dish to recreate but it only requires a small amount of preparation. The mint mustard is a great complement to any barbequed meat and pairs equally well with the crispy, cheese potatoes that are a true indulgence. Prepare yourselves for this heavy hitting spring fusion dish.


Ingredients:

  • 1, 6-bone rack of lamb

  • 8 Purple sprouting broccoli


Asian BBQ marinade:

  • 90ml hoisin sauce

  • 30ml rice vinegar

  • 15ml fish sauce

  • 15ml soy sauce

  • 60ml shallot, minced

  • 2 garlic cloves

  • 15g ginger, grated.

  • 1tspn five spice

  • 60g caster sugar


Szechuan jus:

  • 1 tsp Szechuan peppercorns, crushed

  • 1 shallot, chopped

  • 2 garlic cloves, minced

  • 1 sprig of thyme

  • 8 tbsp olive oil

  • 100ml red wine

  • 500ml veal or chicken stock


Mint mustard:

  • Salt and pepper

  • 3 tbsp. whole grain mustard

  • 2 tbsp. white wine vinegar

  • 2 tbsp. honey

  • 1 tbsp horseradish sauce

  • 10 mint leaves


Potato gratin:

  • 4 King Edward/Maris piper or kennebecs potatoes.

  • 200g block of parmesan grated

  • 150ml full fat milk

  • 150ml double cream

  • 2 thyme sprigs

  • Salt and pepper to taste

  • Block of butter


Method:


Lamb rack marinade:


For the best result, visit your local butchers and ask for a 6-bone rack of lamb that has been French trimmed.


This recipe requires some work from the day before. Begin equally slicing the lamb rack in half, so each half has 3 ribs. Score the fat of the lamb in a crisscross pattern to help speed up this process. Mix all the marinade ingredients together and rub ¾ of it into the lamb. Place the lamb in a bowl with any remaining marinade, cover and place in the fridge overnight. Save the last quarter for brushing the lamb once its cooked.


Potato gratin:


The potato gratin should be made the day before. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees and prepare your dish, using a loaf tin. Line with baking parchment, overhang it enough for it to cover the top of the tin. Firstly, add the milk, cream, thyme and seasoning to a bowl. Next, peel and slice the potatoes as thin as possibly, as close to 3mm thick as possible. As you slice the potatoes add them straight to the cream mix.


Begin building the gratin. It’s all about layers, for each layer the gratin requires salt, pepper, parmesan and melted butter. Overlap the potato slices on each layer, brush with some melted butter, season and sprinkle some grated cheese. Repeat with each level until all the potatoes have gone. Cover with the overlapping parchment. Cover with foil and bake for 2 hours, checking after 90 minutes. Insert a knife to the bottom-it is done when it comes out unresisted and clean. Remove from the oven, remove the foil, cool, wrap in cling film and cover with something heavy to help press the potato slices together. Leave overnight in the fridge.


Szechuan jus:


Sweat the shallot, the garlic and thyme in a little oil cooking without any colour. Add the red wine and reduce until almost evaporated. Add the stock and continue to reduce until it reaches the required sauce consistency. Strain the sauce and infuse for 10 minutes with the remaining Sichuan peppercorns. Strain again. This can also be made the night before and reheated for use.


Mint mustard:


To make the sauce, add mustard, vinegar, honey and horseradish to a food processor or alternatively whisk. Turn it on and stream in the remaining oil and the garlic cloves. To this mixture, add your mint and process until finely chopped.


If you whisk it, finely chop the mint leaves prior to mixing, and continually whisk while slowly adding the oil.



To finish the dish:


Preheat the oven to 190 degrees and place a saucepan of salted boiling water on the stove.


Remove your potato gratin from the mould and slice into rectangle portions. To finish them, they need to be cooked in a medium hot pan with some oil until all sides are coloured. This will take around 2 minutes on each side.


To cook your lamb, place a pan on medium high heat with a small amount of vegetable oil. Place in the pan skin side down for 2-3 minutes until golden brown. Flip and sear the meat for a couple more minutes. Place on a wire rack in a baking tray with the gratin and place in the oven for 8-10 minutes. This will bring you up to medium rare. If you prefer it more cooked, then return to the oven for 2-5 more minutes. Remove from the oven and brush with the remaining BBQ marinade, wrap in foil and rest for at least 5 minutes.


While the lamb rests, blanch the broccoli, place in the boiling water, bring back to the boil and cook for 2 minutes, drain well and serve. Reheat the jus to temperature.


To serve, slice the lamb into 3 individual chops, finish with some flaky sea salt. A spoonful of mustard on the plate, add the broccoli and finally the crispy potato gratin.



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