Scott’s Lamb Chops were invented for this year’s Dudes’ Food event by a pretty fascinating “dude.” Let’s just say that Scott has a lot of varied interests…
A stonemason by trade, he is tough and dirty as he hauls rocks all day, yet he turns up at a party looking like he stepped off the runway at New York Fashion Week. (He dresses much better than most women I know.) He’s a cowboy one minute, and holds tea parties with his granddaughters the next. He digs pits to roast whole pigs and does beautiful oil paintings.
Lamb is one of Scott’s favorites, so it wasn’t surprising that he created an Oh-So-Amazing lamb dish for Dudes’ Food. His inspiration was a trip to Turkey a few years ago, where we all partook of loads of excellent lamb dishes. But when I think of Scott and Turkey and lamb in the same breath, it’s not necessarily a restaurant menu item that comes to mind. It’s the Turkish bath house.
Of course, when in Turkey, you must do as the Turks…go to a Hamam, or Turkish bath, just as people have done for thousands of years. Our men found the oldest in Istanbul and had to try it. With teeny, tiny towels wrapped around their waists, they spent a glorious and very entertaining afternoon being lathered, worked over, massaged, and pampered, all on big marble slabs in a cavernous room.
Of course, all that old stone made Scott rather giddy (remember, he’s a stonemason by trade), and near the end of their stay, in his blissful state, he did something the hamam probably has never heard before and never will again. He started baa-ing like a lamb. In that huge stone room, the sound bounced off all the walls, and pretty soon, all the men joined in, baa-ing like a whole herd of half-naked singing sheep. There’s a visual. That hamam will never be the same.
- 6-8 lamb chops
- 3 tsp. fresh rosemary
- 2 tsp. fresh thyme
- 2 tsp. fresh sage
- 3 cloves garlic
- 1 tsp. dried oregano
- 1 tsp. lemon zest
- Juice of 2 lemons
- 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar
- Lemon pepper, salt and pepper to taste
- Garnishes: grilled lemon slices, pomegranate seeds, grilled flat bread, fresh garden greens, balsamic glaze, feta cheese
- Place lamb chops in large ziplock bag. Mix all ingredients together and pour over lamb.
- Marinate at least 4 hours or overnight in refrigerator.
- Bring to room temperature, and sear on medium-high heat in cast-iron skillet to desired doneness, about 3 minutes per side for medium rare.
- Remove from heat, cover with foil and let rest.
- Serve with optional garnishes, if desired.
*Active prep time is about 5 minutes. Marinate meat for hours or overnight to develop flavors.
*Cooking lamb in a skillet renders the fat and makes the meat extremely juicy.
*You can also grill lamb, if desired. Grill over medium heat for about 3 minutes per side for medium rare.