This recipe is a variation on shashlik po karsky, a lamb riblet kebab that was popular in parts of the former USSR. To give these lamb chops a more Middle Eastern flair, mix in some ras el hanout (or garam masala), along with a little harissa paste or red pepper flake if you’d like a bit of heat. If you can’t grill, then roast the lamb in your oven. You can slice the lamb racks into individual chops either before or after grilling. I find it’s easier to turn and control the cooking temperature for a whole rack of lamb, but individual chops have more sides to coat with marinade, cook faster, and develop more of those gorgeous grill marks that everyone loves.
- 3/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 10 garlic cloves, minced
- 1/3 cup pomegranate molasses
- 3 tablespoons dried mint, crushed
- 2 tablespoons dried rosemary, crushed
- Kosher salt
- Freshly ground pepper
- Two 2 1/4-pound frenched racks of lamb
In a large bowl, whisk the olive oil with the garlic, pomegranate molasses, mint, rosemary, 2 teaspoons of salt and a generous pinch of pepper. Add the lamb chops and turn to coat with the pomegranate glaze; let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, light a grill or preheat a grill pan.
If grilling individually sliced chops: grill over moderately high heat, turning, until chops are lightly charred outside and medium-rare inside (total coo time about 4 to 6 minutes).
If grilling whole racks: Sear rack, bone side down first, over direct medium heat until lightly browned, 2 to 4 minutes, turning once (be careful, if any fat drips off, flareups might occur). Move the lamb over indirect medium heat and grill to desired doneness, about 15 minutes more for medium-rare. Remove from the grill and let rest for 3-5 minutes before cutting into chops.
If roasting whole racks: Arrange the rack bone side down in a large cast iron skillet. Roast the lamb in a 350˚ oven for 12 to 18 minutes, depending on the degree of doneness you want. With a meat thermometer, take a reading in the center of the meat after 10 to 12 minutes and remove the meat, or let it cook longer, to your taste.
Temperatures and approximate times (for a whole rack):
- Rare: 125°F (about 15 minutes per pound)
- Medium-Rare: 130°F to 135°F (about 20 minutes per pound)
- Medium: 135°F to 140°F (about 25 minutes per pound)
- Well-Done: 155°F to 165°F (about 30 minutes per pound)
Cook’s Notes: For best results either grilling or broiling, let your lamb come to room temperature before cooking (this keeps it from drying out). Before serving, let the lamb rest for at least 3 minutes to keep them nice and juicy.
last updated August 17, 2023