Ned's pan-roasted lamb rack with curry chickpeas

Ned's pan-roasted lamb rack with curry chickpeas


  • 750g-1kg lamb rack
  • 2-3 inch piece of ginger, grated
  • 5-6 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 2 tsp mustard seeds (brown or yellow)
  • 1 tbsp ground coriander
  • 1 tbsp kashmiri chilli powder (or 3 tsp paprika, 1 tsp cayenne pepper)
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 400g can chopped tomatoes or tomato puree
  • 400g can chickpeas, drained
  • ½ cup chopped coriander
  • 1 lemon
  • Yoghurt
  • 2 large or 3 small cucumbers
  • Fried curry leaves (optional)

The Victoria Hill Lamb Method: 

  1. Salt the lamb all over and leave it uncovered in the fridge overnight. Take the lamb out of the fridge 1 hour before cooking. (If you’re short on time, salt the meat 1 hour ahead and leave it covered at room temp). Dry the meat thoroughly before cooking.
  2. Using a vegetable peeler, peel off strips of the cucumbers until you hit the seeds. Rotate and repeat until you’re left with only the seeds, then discard the seeds.
  3. Add the cucumber strips to a bowl along with 2 tsp salt and the juice of half the lemon. Allow to sit at room temperature for 20-30 mins, then place into a strainer to allow the excess liquid to drain.
  4. Preheat your oven to 180C. Set a saucepan over low heat and add ¼ cup of ghee or neutral oil.
  5. Once preheated, add the mustard seeds, ginger and garlic. Cook stirring for 2-3 mins until very fragrant, then add the ground coriander, chilli powder and turmeric. Cook for 30 sec, then add the tomatoes and half the tin of water. Cook covered over a low heat for 20-30 mins.
  6. Meanwhile, heat an oven proof skillet or frying pan over medium-high heat. Once preheated add 2 tbsp of ghee or neutral oil with a high smoke point. Once the oil starts to move around the pan, place the lamb rack fat side down into the pan. Once a nice crust has formed (3-5 mins), rotate to another side. Continue until all sides (including the two ends) are well browned.
  7. Position the meat with the fat cap facing up and place in the preheated oven. Roast until the internal temperature is 55C (15-20 mins) for medium rare or 65C (25-30 mins) for well done.
  8. By this time the tomato sauce should be cooked down slightly. Taste and season, leaving a bit of wiggle room for final seasoning. Add the can of chickpeas and stir through well. Cook for another 10 mins, then turn off the heat and add the coriander and juice of the remaining half a lemon. Stir through, then taste and adjust the seasoning as needed.
  9. When the lamb is done, let it rest uncovered on a plate for 10-15 mins. Once rested, carve into individual chops.
  10. Pour the chickpeas onto a large serving platter, lay the lamb chops on top, and garnish with fried curry leaves or fresh coriander. Serve with the cucumbers and yoghurt.

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