Mint-Pesto Lamb Chops
I adore the taste and richness of lamb. But it takes bold flavors to complement the lamb, and this recipe definitely does that. The simple mint-cilantro pesto marries well with the lamb flavor, while the pomegranate-balsamic reduction adds the perfect balance to finish off the dish. This easy-to-prepare entree is delicious and gourmet, and is sure to impress.—Melanie Stevenson, Reading, Pennsylvania
Total TimePrep: 40 min. Cook: 20 min.
- 2 cups pomegranate juice
- 1 cup balsamic vinegar
- 1/4 cup fresh mint leaves
- 1/4 cup fresh cilantro leaves
- 8 garlic cloves, peeled
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon pepper
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 8 double-cut lamb rib chops (2 inches thick and 4 ounces each)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- Pomegranate seeds and torn fresh mint leaves, optional
- In a large saucepan, bring pomegranate juice and vinegar to a boil over medium heat; cook until reduced to 1/2 cup.
- Meanwhile, for pesto, place the mint, cilantro, garlic, salt and pepper in a small food processor; cover and pulse until chopped. While processing, gradually add oil in a steady stream.
- Coat chops with pesto. In a large ovenproof skillet, brown lamb in oil on all sides.
- Bake, uncovered, at 450° oven for 15-20 minutes or until meat reaches desired doneness (for medium-rare, a thermometer should read 135°; medium, 140°; medium-well, 145°). Drizzle with pomegranate sauce and, if desired, sprinkle with pomegranate seeds and mint leaves.
Nutrition Facts2 lamb chops with 1 tablespoon sauce: 238 calories, 13g fat (3g saturated fat), 45mg cholesterol, 352mg sodium, 15g carbohydrate (13g sugars, 0 fiber), 15g protein.
Originally published as Mint Pesto Lamb Chops with Pomegranate-Balsamic Reduction in Taste of Home Cookbook Contest 2010/2011