Fruit Stuffed Rack of Lamb

Total Time:
2 hr
Prep:
35 min
Cook:
1 hr 25 min

Yield:
4 to 6 servings
Level:
Intermediate

Ingredients
  • 4 half-racks of lamb, about 1-pound each
  • 2 tablespoons Emeril's Original Essence, recipe follows
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped yellow onions
  • 2 tablespoons diced chopped celery
  • 1 tablespoon minced shallots
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped dried apricots
  • 1/4 cup golden raisins
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped prunes
  • 1 cup port
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh mint leaves
  • 1/4 cup ground walnuts
  • 1 cup plain bread crumbs
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 cup Creole mustard, or other whole-grain, spicy mustard
  • Sauce, recipe follows
  • Essence (Emeril's Creole Seasoning):
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons paprika
  • 2 tablespoons salt
  • 2 tablespoons garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 tablespoon dried leaf oregano
  • 1 tablespoon dried thyme
  • Sauce for stuffed rack of lamb:
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon minced shallots
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped onion
  • 1/4 cup dry fruit stuffing
  • 3/4 cup dry red wine
  • 2 cups veal/lamb stock
  • 1 tablespoon walnuts, ground very fine
  • 1 tablespoon chopped sage
  • Salt and fresh cracked black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons cold butter
Directions

Season the fat on the meaty sides of each rack with 1 tablespoon of the Essence. Heat the butter in a medium skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onions, celery, shallots, 1/4 teaspoon of the salt, and pepper, and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds. Add the apricots, raisins, and prunes, and cook for 2 minutes. Add the Port and cook until almost all the liquid has evaporated, about 5 minutes. Add the mint and walnuts, and stir well to combine. Remove from the heat and let cool for 10 minutes. (If desired, the stuffing may be made 1 day ahead and refrigerated, tightly wrapped.) Reserve 1/4 cup nut stuffing for sauce. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. With a thin, sharp knife, cut into the middle of the lamb loin going as deep as you can. Turn the lamb and cut into the center from the other end, to make the 2 ends meet as 1 long slit. Insert a long handled wooden spoon into the slit and push it through the hole on the other side. Gently work the spoon handle to enlarge the hole to 1/2 to 3/4-inch in diameter. With your fingers, work the fruit stuffing into the center of the meat, so that the hole is filled with about 1/4 cup of the stuffing. Repeat with the remaining racks and stuffing. Heat a heavy skillet over medium high heat. Add one rack to the pan and sear until brown on all sides, about 7 minutes. Repeat with remaining racks. Combine the bread crumbs, olive oil, remaining tablespoon of Essence, and remaining 1/2 teaspoon of salt, in a shallow bowl. Rub each rack with 2 tablespoons of the mustard, then press on the seasoned breadcrumbs, coating the fat and both ends evenly. Place the lamb on a roasting pan meaty-side up, and cover the bones with aluminum foil to prevent them from burning as they cook. Roast the racks of lamb 20 to 25 minutes for medium-rare. While the racks are roasting, make the sauce.

Essence (Emeril's Creole Seasoning):

Combine all ingredients thoroughly and store in an airtight jar or container.

Yield: about 2/3 cup

Recipe from "New New Orleans Cooking", by Emeril Lagasse and Jessie Tirsch. Published by William and Morrow, 1993.

Sauce for stuffed rack of lamb:

In a 1-quart saucepan set over a medium-high heat, add the olive oil. Add the shallots and garlic to the pan and sweat for 1 minute. Add the onions to the pan and sweat for 2 to 3 minutes. Add the dry fruit stuffing to the pan and sweat for 1 minute and deglaze with the red wine. Reduce the wine until nearly evaporated, and add the stock and the walnuts to the pan and reduce by 30 percent. Add the chopped sage to the sauce, and season with the salt and black pepper. Swirl the cold butter into the sauce off the heat, and serve immediately over the lamb.

Yield: approximately 1 1/4 cups


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