back to top

Rack of Lamb with Warm Apple & Lentil Salad

by Leigh Sackett

Now that we are in the 3rd week of January to most  Christmas is a distant memory but I mourn the passing of Christmas like it was an old friend. I tried to keep the tree up as long as I could but then I began to feel strange about it, as if I may need counseling. We sang Hark the Herald Angels Sing in church two Sundays ago and I don’t think I have ever sung so loud because my heart was so happy, I leaned down to my daughter and whispered – “it’s like it is Christmas again!” Last week I was at a church meeting and someone mentioned a Christmas in July celebration and I got very excited about the idea of Christmas coming again sooner than I expected. When I finally do put the Christmas music away I pull out the next best thing – “The Sound of Music” soundtrack and I play it over and over again in the car to soothe my heavy heart. My children get a little annoyed but they laugh with me too, as if to say, “Mom is missing Christmas again . . . This too shall pass.”

When I was 25 I would take down the tree the day after Christmas as soon as I could so maybe my problem is not as much about mourning Christmas, as it is about the passage of time. I think we do appreciate the beauty in life more in our later years than we do in our 20’s for we recognize how truly fleeting it can be.

So I sigh heavily as I look in the corner of the living room where the tree once stood and I remind myself the best part of Christmas is eternal and it will never be packed up and crammed under the steps or left out on the curb for the city trucks to haul away.  But when I put the material part of Christmas away for another year, usually a few things get left out, like our angel of the Lord night light …  I think they help me carry Christmas in my heart.

This is a comforting (YET HEALTHY!) recipe that helps to remind us to savor all that is beautiful in life . . . Enjoy!

2 tablespoons coarse dry breadcrumbs, preferably whole-wheat

1 1/2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided

1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary, divided

3/4 teaspoon kosher salt, divided

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper, divided

1 1 1/2-pound rack of lamb, Frenched and trimmed

3 teaspoons Dijon mustard, divided

2 shallots, finely chopped

1 15-ounce can lentils, rinsed, or 1 1/3 cups cooked lentils

1 Granny Smith apple, finely chopped

2 stalks celery with leaves, finely chopped

3/4 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth, or water

2 teaspoons sherry vinegar, or cider vinegar

-Preheat oven to 450°.

-Mix breadcrumbs, 1/2 teaspoon oil, 1/2 teaspoon rosemary, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper in a small bowl.

-Heat the remaining 1 teaspoon oil in a large ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat. Add lamb, meat-side down, and sear until browned, about 1 1/2 minutes. Turn it over and spread 2 teaspoons mustard over the meat. Sprinkle the breadcrumb mixture over the mustard. Transfer the lamb to the oven and roast until a thermometer inserted in the center registers 140°F for medium-rare, 15 to 20 minutes. Transfer to a plate and tent with foil to keep warm.

-Return the pan to medium-high heat (be careful: the handle will still be hot). Add shallots, the remaining 1/2 teaspoon rosemary, 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper and cook, stirring constantly, until starting to soften, about 1 minute. Stir in lentils, apple, celery, broth (or water), vinegar and the remaining 1 teaspoon mustard; bring to a lively simmer. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the liquid is slightly reduced and the celery and apple are starting to soften, about 4 minutes. Cut the lamb into 8 chops and serve over the lentils.

Latest Articles

- Advertisement -Fox Radio CBS Sports Radio Advertisement

Latest Articles

- Advertisement -

Related Articles