Delicately delicious and tender lamb covered in a gently sweet, flavorful crust – this garlic herb crusted rack of lamb is one special and delicious meal!
Lamb is certainly one of my favorite meats. In fact, if it wasn’t for things like pork belly and bacon, it would be my favorite. Within the cuts of lamb, rack of lamb is almost definitely my favorite cut.
I know that sounds a bit non-committal, it’s just now and then a lamb shank recipe (like my braised lamb shanks and lamb rogan josh) will blow me away. But certainly of the quicker cuts to cook, rack of lamb wins hands down. True, it’s not the cheapest cut, but it pays for itself in how tasty and tender it is.
Here I have coated it with a garlic and herb crumb crust, with some almond meal and lemon zest, held on with a little honey that all come together to add a deliciously aromatic, slightly sweet topping to an already great dish.
How to make the garlic herb crusted rack of lamb
The crumb mixture is pretty quick to mix together, then it’s just a case of scoring the fat on the rack of lamb, rubbing on a bit of honey as ‘glue’ (that’s also lovely taste-wise) and sticking on the crumbs. Then rest it in an oven dish so the crust is at the top and pop it in to roast.
The exact roasting time depends on how pink you like your meat. The crumbs will probably fall off a bit as you cut the lamb, but don’t worry, just serve them up and eat them alongside. They’re delicious and you don’t want to waste them.
If you are cooking for four then a whole rack is typically about enough, if you have plenty of sides. For two, you can often ask your butcher to give you a half rack, in which case halve the topping amount. Cooking time will be a little less with a half rack but not by too much.
What to serve with rack of lamb
You can go for a wide range of sides with the dish, from roast vegetables to mash, or some nice steamed asparagus, beans or broccoli. You probably don’t want anything too strong in flavor since the flavors with this lamb are relatively delicate but still distinct.
It might not seem light a typical toddler dish, but my son loved trying little bits of the lamb and the crumbs. Often he struggles eating lamb as he has to work at it a bit more, but this is so tender it almost melts in your mouth and he happily came back for more. As you can imagine I had mixed feelings of being glad he liked it and thinking ‘I want some left for me too!’
This is a dish that is a great introduction to lamb if you’ve not had it before. It’s so tender, the crust gives it that slight sweetness and it’s not as ‘lamby’ as some other cuts. I know that sounds a bit odd, but hopefully makes sense. What I’m getting at is it’s worth branching out!
This rack of lamb is both easy and thoroughly delicious. It’s one to treat yourself with soon.
Garlic herb crusted rack of lamb
- 1 rack of lamb
- 1/2 cup breadcrumbs (or a little more - around 1 slice)
- 1 clove garlic crushed
- 1/2 lemon zest (ie from 1/2 lemon)
- 1 tsp rosemary finely chopped, around 1 sprig
- 3 tbsp fresh parsley chopped
- 2 tbsp almond meal ground almonds
- 1 tsp honey
- Preheat the oven to 400F/200C.
- Score the fat side of the rack of lamb so that you cut into the fat but not all the way through to the meat.
- In a small bowl, mix together the breadcrumbs, crushed garlic, lemon zest, rosemary, parsley and almond meal.
- Rub the honey over the fat side of the lamb, sit it in a roasting dish so the fat side is up and carefully press the crumbs all over the fat. If you have any extra, you can also put some on the side.
- Roast for around 30 mins for pink, or around 10min more to be med-well done. Keep an eye on it as it cooks, covering with foil if the crust becomes too brown.
- Allow the lamb to rest 5-10min before cutting between the bones into cutlets.