We are delighted to feature a recipe from fellow West Countryman James Strawbridge. This recipe is perfect for long, hot spring and summer days. James skilfully combines the bright flavours of mint with earthy lamb chops. The recipe also includes instructions for making mint salt, which not only serves as a great way to preserve this summer herb but also makes a wonderful addition to a variety of dishes beyond this one.
James’s new book revolves around the topic of salt and how this essential ingredient can elevate cooking, taking flavours from good to great, and from great to unforgettable. The book is ideal for all Farm Wilder customers who are interested in exploring unique ways to prepare their meat, including curing, drying, and salt baking.
The following recipes are from James Strawbridge’s new book Salt and the Art of Seasoning (Chelsea Green Publishing, May 2023) and are reprinted with permission from the publisher.
8 small Lamb Cutlets or Loin Rip Chops, about 650g/1lb 7oz in total
1 tsp Mint Salt (see below), plus an extra pinch
½ tsp cracked Black Pepper
125ml/4fl oz Dry Cider
1 tbsp Wholegrain Mustard
2 tbsp Runny Honey
55g/2oz Unsalted Butter
4 Garlic Cloves, bashed in their skins
For the mint salt
8 Sprigs Mint, leaves picked
140g/5oz Sea Salt Crystals
Boiled potatoes with fresh mint
Chargrilled baby leeks
Season the lamb chops on both sides with the mint salt and black pepper. Cook the lamb in a large, non-stick pan over a medium-high heat and render the fat down for 4-5 minutes until golden. Turn the chops on their side and cook for 2 more minutes.
Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, reduce the cider, mustard and honey over a high heat for 5 minutes until sticky. Set aside.
Add the butter and garlic to the lamb pan and cook until golden and bubbly, at the same time searing the chops for a further 1-2 minutes on each side.
Brush the chops with a glaze of the reduced cider, mustard and honey mixture. Remove from the heat, cover with foil and allow to rest for 5-10 minutes.
Blitz the mint and salt in a food processor until you have a smooth green colour. You can dry the salt in a dehydrator or on a baking tray in a low oven at 70°C fan/195°F/gas oven very low to increase the shelf life, but it sacrifices some of the brightness. I tend to store it fresh in an airtight container in a cool, dry place and use within 2 weeks.
Season the lamb with one final pinch of mint salt before serving with the selection of vegetables.
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