Crispy Lamb Ribs with Sherry–Honey Glaze and Minted Yogurt Sauce
Dinex Group, NYC
Serve these succulent and spicy lamb ribs at your next cookout and they will be gone in a flash.
4 servings as an appetizer or 2 servings as a main course
- 1 rack of lamb
- 2 tablespoons coarse sea salt
- 3 cloves garlic, smashed
- 3 sprigs thyme
- 2 sprigs rosemary
- 1 bay leaf
- Olive oil as needed
- 1 cup yogurt (preferably sheep’s milk)
- 1/4 cup crème fraîche
- 2 tablespoons chopped mint
- 1 1/2 teaspoons minced chives
- 1/2 teaspoon finely minced garlic
- Zest from half of a lemon
- Tabasco to taste
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1 tablespoon coriander seeds
- 1 1/2 teaspoons chopped parsley
- 1 1/2 teaspoons coarse sea salt
- 1 teaspoon ground Aleppo pepper
- Zest from half of a lemon
- 1 1/2 teaspoons fennel seeds
- 1 1/2 teaspoons coriander seeds
- 1 1/2 teaspoons black peppercorns
- 1 1/2 teaspoons ground Aleppo pepper
- 1/2 cup sherry vinegar
- 1/2 cup honey
- 1 tablespoon cold butter
- Canola oil as needed
Place the rack of lamb in a pot or container large enough to fit it comfortably. Sprinkle the sea salt all over both sides of the lamb. Add the garlic, thyme, rosemary, and bay leaf. Cover the lamb and refrigerate for at least 8 hours or overnight.
Preheat the oven to 165ºF. Rinse the lamb under cold water to wash away the seasonings. Pat dry with paper towels. Place the lamb in an enameled cast-iron pot large enough to hold it comfortably, then add enough olive oil to fully cover the meat. Put the pot over a low flame and heat until the olive oil is just starting to bubble, about 30 minutes. Cover the pot with a tight-fitting lid and transfer to the oven. Cook until the lamb is just tender and an instant thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the rack registers at 160ºF, about 2 hours. Remove from the oven and let the lamb cool in the olive oil. Transfer the pot to the refrigerator and let the lamb rest in the oil for 4 hours.
While the lamb rests, prepare the minted yogurt sauce and the seasoning. To make the yogurt sauce, place the yogurt, crème fraîche, mint, chives, garlic, and lemon zest in a small mixing bowl and mix until well combined. Season to taste with Tabasco, salt, and pepper. Refrigerate until needed.
To make the seasoning, preheat the oven to 250ºF. Place the coriander seeds on the work surface and press down on them with a heavy pot to break them up. Place the cracked coriander seeds on a baking sheet along with the parsley, sea salt, Aleppo pepper, and lemon zest. Toast in the oven until the seasonings are fragrant and the parsley and zest are dry, about 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and set aside until needed.
Take the lamb out of the pot and wipe off the excess oil. Slice the rack into individual ribs and set aside.
Fill a large, tall pot with 6 inches of canola oil and heat to 350ºF.
While the oil heats up, make the sherry–honey glaze: wrap the fennel seeds, coriander seeds, black peppercorns, and Aleppo pepper in cheese cloth and tie the pouch with string. Place in a medium saucepan over low heat along with the sherry vinegar and honey. Bring to a low simmer and cook until the liquid has reduced by half, about 20 minutes. Remove from heat and whisk in the cold butter. Cover to keep warm until needed.
When the oil reaches 350ºF, fry the lamb ribs in batches, until golden and crispy, about 1 minute per batch. (Make sure the temperature of the oil returns to 350ºF before frying a new batch.) Transfer to a plate lined with paper towels to drain.
Brush the ribs with warm glaze and sprinkle generously with toasted seasoning. Serve with a bowl of minted yogurt sauce on the side.