Skewered Lamb with Rioja Red Wine Vinaigrette and Endive Salad with Blue Cheese, Serrano Ham and Pears

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  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 4 hr 38 min
  • Prep: 30 min
  • Inactive: 4 hr
  • Cook: 8 min
  • Yield: 8 servings
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1 bottle Rioja red wine

1/4 cup red wine vinegar

2 tablespoons Dijon Mustard

1 teaspoon honey

1 cup olive oil

Salt and freshly ground pepper

2 heads garlic, peeled and crushed

1 1/2 cups pure olive oil

8 rosemary sprigs

4 pound lamb loin, cut into 2-inch cubes

32 roasted pearl onions

Blue Cheese Dressing:

1/2 cup creme fraiche

2 tablespoons mayonnaise

1/4 cup Dijon mustard

2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

2 tablespoons walnut oil

Salt and freshly ground pepper

1/3 cup crumbled blue cheese

2 tablespoons romano cheese


1 tablespoon olive oil

1/4 pound serrano ham, cut into thin slices

2 heads endive, sliced in half lengthwise, then sliced crosswise into thin slices

1/2 pound frisee

Salt and pepper

2 ripe pears, Anjou or Bartlett, halved, pitted and sliced 1/4-inch thick

1/4 cup toasted sliced almonds

Blue Cheese Dressing


  1. Make the vinaigrette: In a medium nonreactive saucepan over high heat, reduce the wine to 1/4 cup. Place it in a blender with the vinegar, mustard and honey and blend until combined. With the motor running, slowly add the olive oil until emulsified. Season with salt and pepper to taste. May be refrigerated up to 2 days. Bring to room temperature before using.
  2. Make the lamb: Soak 8 bamboo skewers 6 inches long in water for 2 hours or overnight. In a large bowl, combine the garlic, olive oil, rosemary and lamb and marinate the lamb 4 to 6 hours in the refrigerator. Prepare a grill or broiler. Thread the lamb cubes and roasted onions on the skewers and season with salt and pepper to taste. Grill until rare to medium-rare, about 3 to 4 minutes on each side. Place the skewers on a serving platter and drizzle the Rioja vinaigrette over them. Can serve with instant couscous made with chicken stock.
  3. Blue Cheese Dressing: Whisk together the creme fraiche, mayonnaise, Dijon mustard, lemon juice and oil and season with salt and pepper. Fold in blue cheese and romano.
  4. Salad: Heat the oil in a small saute pan over high heat until smoking. Add the ham and cook until crisp. Place the endive and frisee in a large bowl, toss with some of the dressing and season with salt and pepper, to taste. Divide the greens among four plates and top with some of the ham. Place 3 pear slices around the plate and sprinkle with some of the almonds.