Feta-crusted lamb with rich tomato sauce

Feta-crusted lamb with rich tomato sauce

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(19 ratings)

Prep: 20 mins Cook: 30 mins Plus marinating and resting

Easy

Serves 2
As the lamb roasts, little nuggets of feta from the crust melt into the gutsy, tomatoey, garlicky sauce

Nutrition and extra info

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal582
  • fat48g
  • saturates18g
  • carbs12g
  • sugars6g
  • fibre3g
  • protein26g
  • salt1.47g
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Ingredients

  • 7-or 8-bone rack of lamb, trimmed of fat, then cut into two racks
    Lamb

    Lamb

    laam

    A lamb is a sheep that is under one year old, and is known for its delicate flavour and tender…

  • few thyme sprigs, left whole, plus extra sprigs to serve

    Thyme

    This popular herb grows in Europe, especially the Mediterranean, and is a member of the mint…

  • 1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra for frying and drizzling
  • zest ½ lemon
    Lemon

    Lemon

    le-mon

    Oval in shape, with a pronouced bulge on one end, lemons are one of the most versatile fruits…

  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
    Oregano

    Oregano

    or-ee-gar-no

    Closely related to marjoram, of which it is the wild equivalent, oregano has a coarser, more…

For the sauce

  • 20g pack flat-leaf parsley
  • 1 fat or 2 regular garlic cloves, crushed
  • 400g can cherry tomatoes

For the crust

  • 50g feta cheese, finely crumbled
  • zest ½ lemon
    Lemon

    Lemon

    le-mon

    Oval in shape, with a pronouced bulge on one end, lemons are one of the most versatile fruits…

  • pinch dried oregano
    Oregano

    Oregano

    or-ee-gar-no

    Closely related to marjoram, of which it is the wild equivalent, oregano has a coarser, more…

  • ½ slice white bread (use day-old if you can), whizzed into crumbs

Method

  1. Marinate the lamb first. Put the racks into a non-metallic dish and mix the thyme, oil, lemon zest, garlic and half the oregano in a bowl. Rub this all over the lamb, then leave to marinate for at least 30 mins or up to 24 hrs. It’s important that you cook the lamb from room temperature rather than fridge cold, so if you’re cooking within 1 hr or so, leave it out of the fridge.

  2. For the sauce, finely chop the parsley stalks. Heat a large ovenproof frying pan or wide casserole, then add 1 tbsp olive oil. Add the garlic and the stalks, then soften for 1 min. Add the tomatoes and remaining oregano, then simmer for 5 mins until saucy, popping the cherry tomatoes with your wooden spoon to release all the juices and seeds. Chop the parsley leaves roughly and add half to the pan. Heat oven to 230C/fan 210C/ gas 8. Make the crust by mixing the remaining parsley leaves, feta, zest, oregano and breadcrumbs in a bowl.

  3. When you’re ready to cook the lamb, leave most of the tasty marinade on the meat, season it well with salt and freshly ground pepper, then press the crust onto one side of each piece. Sit the racks in the sauce, with the crust-side facing upwards. Strew the thyme sprigs from the marinade over the lamb and into the sauce, then drizzle everything with a little extra virgin olive oil. Roast the lamb in the sauce, uncovered, for 20 mins (for pink and juicy meat) until the crust is golden and the sauce thickened. Leave to rest for 10 mins, loosely covered, so that the crust doesn’t go soggy, then carve the lamb between each bone to make cutlets. Serve the crusted cutlets with spoonfuls of the intense, roasted-down tomato sauce, and the Easy buttered onion pilaf and Lemony greens (recipes below). Garnish with thyme.

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Comments, questions and tips

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genputtay
29th Apr, 2016
5.05
I usually steer away from lamb racks, finding them a bit fiddly to eat with a knife and fork. But my boyfriend came home with a rack, and after doing some recon I found this recipe. The result: the best lamb rack I’ve ever made. The feta cheese is a winner of an ingredient. It complements the lamb beautifully, and there is something special when you get a little nugget of it in the cherry tomato sauce. I found the cooking times to be spot on for me, but I like my meat very pink. I served the lamb with roasted new potatoes and butter-braised asparagus, leeks and peas (both recipes from this site). Oh, and as far as the fiddly eating was concerned – I ended up using my fingers and eating the lamb cutlets like lollipops!
foodylicious
18th Feb, 2015
5.05
This is definitely the best recipe there is for a rack of lamb/lamb cutlets. So delicious that I registered, just so I could leave a comment. I used to think I had the best lamb recipe before, but was proven wrong by my boyfriend on valentine's day last year. The meat is sooo juicy in this recipe. The sauce is tangy and very morish. The feta cheese crust adds an amazing depth to the dish. You have to serve it with the recommended Easy Buttered Onion Pilaf rice; they just go soooooo well together! If still wondering whether you should try this; trust me, you won't regret it!
dancingbunny
15th Aug, 2013
4.05
The crust was really nice and full of flavour, however I also agree that the meat needed more time than stated in the recipe. Even my friend who likes her meat rare thought it was too underdone so I covered it in foil and put it back in the oven for an extra 15 minutes and then it was perfect. I served it with baby new potatoes instead of rice, roasting them right alongside the lamb and they picked up lovely lemony and tomato-y flavours.
amye_123
31st Mar, 2013
4.05
We had this tonight, really tasty and satisfying meal. I cooked the lamb for a few minutes more as others had recommended and was just right. The feta crust really complements the lamb and the tomato sauce is excellent-would work with so many meats. We served this with simple broad beans-yummy!
lovesgoodfood4
3rd Mar, 2013
5.05
This is one of the best recipes I've ever cooked! I made it for my boyfriend and he loved it. I would also agree that the lamb probably needs another 3-5 mins cooking but then we don't like it to be too pink. I also added a little anchovy paste and a little balsamic vinegar to the sauce and it was lovely. I served it with crispy garlic roast potatoes and lemony broccoli - lovely!
valleybaker46
14th Aug, 2012
5.05
Made this last night and it went done a treat!! It was SO YUMMY! Everyone loved the sauce and how rich it was! I added some worstershire sauce and ketchup to it. I cooked the lamp for the time recommended but it seemed to be a little underdone but everyone loved it still! I served it with creamy mash :-)
jennifer3glover
16th Jul, 2012
Just had to comment on this.....my boyfriend is super fussy but served this with green beans and crushed new pots and he absolutely loved it. After reading the comments re lemon though I didn't put any lemon zest in the marinade just in the feta crust. Would definitely make again!
chocolatchaud
22nd Feb, 2012
4.05
Made this for Valentine's Day. I loved it but my fiance thought it was a little too lemony, so I'd probably cut down the amount to the zest of half a lemon in total. The rice was OK but a bit soggy - I think it needs to be on slightly higher than the lowest possible heat, which is what I normally do for pilau.
missycharlie
29th Dec, 2011
5.05
Easy and delicious! Try with crushed new potatoes instead of rice.
pambarsby
5th Apr, 2011
5.05
Missed this in 2009 - just tried it from the suppers for 2 supplement. Fabulous flavours. Used Wensledale as I didn't have Feta, and a tin of plum toms with a pinch of sugar. Sauce complements not overpowers the lamb (probably helped as meat resting on bones not submerged in the sauce). Meat cooked just right. Served with braised lettuce & peas from May mag. and new pots. Looked great. Definitely to be repeated.

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