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thomas john
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September 2002 BOSTON
Broiled Lamb Chops
with Indian Spices

Thomas John, Mantra - Boston, MA
Adapted by StarChefs

Yield: 2 servings

  • 1, 1 1/4 lb. rack of lamb with 8 ribs (Your butcher can split the rack in half for you.)
  • 1/2 Tablespoon black peppercorns, coarsely crushed
  • 1 Tablespoon cumin seeds, coarsely crushed
  • 1/2 Tablespoon dried fenugreek leaves
  • 1 Tablespoon Kosher salt
  • 2 Tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • 1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 1/2 Tablespoons plain yogurt

Cut lamb rack in half, 4 ribs to each half.
In a mixing bowl, combine black pepper, cumin seeds and the rest of the ingredients. Rub this marinade over the lamb. Wrap and refrigerate for at least half an hour.
Pre-heat broiler to 500ºF.
Broil lamb 15 minutes for medium rare, five more minutes for medium well. There is no need to turn the meat.
Take rack out of the broiler and let it rest for 5 minutes.
Carve each rib into individual chops and serve with mint yogurt and saffron pilaf.

Saffron Pilaf:

Yield: 2 servings

  • 1 cup Basmati rice (washed, rinsed, and soaked for 1/2 hour.)
  • 2 Tablespoons ghee (This is basically clarified butter. Melt butter until the fat solids fall
  • to the bottom of a pan. Allow to sit, then strain thru cheesecloth.
  • Ghee can also be purchased at an Indian market.)
  • 1/2 cup white onion, finely chopped
  • 2 each cardamom seeds
  • 2 whole cloves
  • 1 each, 1 inch piece of cinnamon stick
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 pinch saffron threads (soaked in 2 Tablespoons of warm water)
  • 2 cups water
  • salt, to taste

Heat ghee in a thick bottomed pot and add all the spices (except saffron). Cook until the spices become aromatic.
Add onion and cook until it appears translucent.
Add salt and water, bring to a boil, then add rice and saffron water.
Return to a boil, then reduce to a simmer.
When water is close to being absorbed and holes begin to form on the surface of the rice, cover with tight fitting lid and finish in preheated 300ºF oven for 15 minutes.
Remove from oven, stir to prevent lumps, and serve.

Mint Yogurt:

  • 1 cup fresh mint leaves, well rinsed and tightly packed
  • 1 cup cilantro leaves, as above
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1/4 cup onion, chopped
  • salt, to taste
  • 1/4 cup raw mango, pitted and sliced
  • 2 Tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 1/2 cup plain yogurt

Blend all ingredients in a blender.
Correct seasoning as necessary.
Store in a non-reactive bowl in the refrigerator.
This sauce can be made a day in advance.