ShareThis Page
Lamb-chops recipe appeals to cook, guests |

Lamb-chops recipe appeals to cook, guests

Betty Rosbottom
| Sunday, April 13, 2008 12:00 a.m

Cooking for weekend company can turn into a marathon if you’re not careful. In the past, I spent an inordinate amount of time in front of my stove, turning out complicated meals for overnight guests. Not anymore. Now I plan simple menus that leave me free to catch up with our out-of-town visitors.

That’s exactly what I did recently when close friends came for an overnight stay. For lunch, a homemade tomato, pasta and chickpea soup made with several convenience ingredients took only 30 minutes from start to finish. A green salad and some delectable purchased cookies completed the noontime offerings. A leisurely breakfast included toasted onion bagels, a platter of smoked salmon and a plate of scrambled eggs offered with orange juice and coffee.

Dinner was the big event of the visit, and I went all out to make it stylish, but I didn’t pour hours into its preparation. Pan-sauteed lamb chops were topped with dollops of whipped feta cheese and garnished with sauteed grape tomatoes. The chops were marinated for 45 minutes in lemon juice, olive oil and smashed garlic before being quickly sauteed along with the tomatoes. Easy side dishes included saffron-scented couscous and blanched baby zucchini. A purchased chocolate tart served as a finale.

Pan-Sauteed Lamb Chops Topped with Whipped Feta

&#149 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

&#149 4 medium-size cloves garlic, smashed and peeled

&#149 1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus extra for seasoning the chops

&#149 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

&#149 1/4 cup olive oil, plus extra for sauteing the chops

&#149 8 rib lamb chops, cut about 1/2-inch thick and about 3 ounces each

v1 cup (18 to 20) grape tomatoes

&#149 Whipped Feta, for garnish ( recipe follows )

&#149 Fresh dill sprigs, for garnish

Combine the lemon juice, garlic, salt, pepper and 1/4 cup olive oil in a shallow, nonreactive pan. Add the lamb chops, turning to coat well. Marinate at room temperature, turning the chops occasionally, for 45 minutes. (You can marinate the lamb, if covered and refrigerated, for as long as 3 hours. Bring to room temperature 30 minutes before cooking.)

Add enough olive oil to lightly coat the bottom of a large, heavy skillet, and place it over medium-high heat. When hot, remove the chops from the marinade, salt them lightly on both sides, and then saute until browned all over and pink in the center, for 2 1/2 to 3 minutes per side. Remove the chops to a platter and cover loosely with foil to keep warm.

Pour all but 2 tablespoons drippings from the skillet and return to medium-high heat. When hot, add the grape tomatoes and cook, stirring just until seared and warmed through, for about 2 minutes. Serve 2 chops per person, each topped with a generous dollop of Whipped Feta. Garnish each serving with some tomatoes and, if desired, a dill sprig.

Makes 4 servings.

Whipped Feta

Whipped Feta can be prepared 3 hours ahead; cover and refrigerate. Bring to room temperature 30 minutes before using.

&#149 1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese

&#149 1/4 cup olive oil

&#149 1 teaspoon lemon juice

&#149 1 1/2 tablespoons chopped dill

In a small bowl and using a handheld mixer (or in a mini-food processor), blend the feta cheese, oil and lemon juice until smooth, then mix in the chopped dill.

Makes about 1/2 cup.

Categories: News
TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.