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Lamb Chops with Mint Salsa Verde

Mint and lamb are traditional in spring. Here they are combined in an unusual and delicious way, with an Italian-style salsa verde. Serve with steamed potatoes and asparagus, which are also delightful dipped into the salsa.

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup lightly packed fresh mint leaves 
  • 1/2 cup lightly packed fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves 
  • 1 small shallot, coarsely chopped 
  • 1/4 tsp. coarse kosher salt, plus more, to taste  
  • Pinch of red pepper flakes 
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil 
  • 1 1/2 tsp. fresh lemon juice  
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste 
  • 4 lamb shoulder round bone chops, each 1 inch thick 

Directions:

In a food processor, combine the mint, parsley, shallot, the 1/4 tsp. salt and the red pepper flakes. Pulse, using on-off turns, until a coarse paste forms. With the machine running, gradually pour in 3 Tbs. of the olive oil, then the lemon juice. Mix in a generous amount of black pepper. Set the salsa verde aside.

Season the lamb chops with salt and black pepper. In a large, heavy fry pan over medium-high heat, warm the remaining 1 Tbs. olive oil. Add the lamb and cook, turning once, about 3 minutes per side for medium-rare, or until done to your liking. Transfer the lamb to warmed plates. Spoon a little of the salsa verde on top of each chop and serve immediately. Serves 4.

Quick Tips: Make extra salsa verde and store it in the refrigerator to accompany chicken, fish or potatoes. The sauce is thick and intense, but it can be thinned to the desired texture with more olive oil.

Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Weeknight Fresh & Fast, by Kristine Kidd (Williams-Sonoma, 2011).