Monday, July 25, 2011

Beautiful Breast of Lamb with Honey Parsley Vinegar Sauce - Hey, My Eyes are Up Here!

You know I love lamb, as evidenced by the various chops, shanks, legs, and shoulders I've featured in the past. These are among the most popular meat recipes on the blog, so it seems many share my love. Here we have a brand new cut to celebrate, the lamb breast.

This is not common in your regular supermarkets. There's an inverse relationship between the size of the parking lot, and the chances you'll find breast of lamb in the meat case. However, a visit to a real butcher (look for lots of tats and facial hair) should be rewarded with some slabs of this bony, fatty, but richly flavored meat.

Since I hadn't cooked this in ages, I decided to play it safe, and use a time-tested Mediterranean-inspired spice rub, and it could not have worked more perfectly. The exotic spices made the rich meat seem even more decadent, all of which was nicely balanced by the vinegar sauce's astringency.

A bright green chimichurri sauce on a well-marbled piece of meat is one of the best things ever, and this dish definitely borrows from that playbook. It's not like you'd want to eat a spoon of the condiment right out of the bowl, but slathered over the glistening meat, it's a thing of beauty.

I hope that if you are a fan of lamb, and you haven't tried lamb breast yet, that you give it a try soon. Enjoy!

2 pieces lamb breast, about 3 1/2 pounds
For the spice rub:
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons cumin
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon dried Italian herbs seasoning (dried rosemary, thyme, basil, oregano blend)
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon coriander
1 teaspoon paprika
For the sauce: (note - this is all "to taste")
1/2 cup packed chopped Italian parsley
2 cloves crushed garlic
1/3 cup white wine vinegar, more as needed
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 or 2 teaspoon honey
juice from 1 lemon
pinch of salt

View the complete recipe


Sarah said...

The sauce reminds me of the mint sauce traditionally served with roast lamb or lamb chops - I think it's an English/Australian thing - it's mint with sugar and malt vinegar

Pantalone said...

Oh yeah, this looks good.

Keep going in this direction with unusual cuts of meat, please.

Anonymous said...

Wow, you litterally can make any cuts of meat taste good. Can you make a recipe out of Cow's tongue, LOL XD.

Anonymous said...

Wow, you litterally can make any cuts of meat taste good. Can you make a recipe out of Cow's tongue, LOL XD.

Anonymous said...

My husband also loves eating lamb. He would like to have it every weekend. So every lamb recipe is appreciated.

Paul D said...

I hope that wasn't Mary's little lamb...

Mr. B said...

Yum! "Iffn' grease aint sloshing in the plate, it aint vittles". That there is definitely the good stuff. Thanks for sharing, Chef.

Chris K. said...

*Chef John force powers*

I am a fan of lamb. I haven't tried lamb breast yet. I will give this a try soon.

These are not the droids I am looking for.

*/Chef John force powers*

Anonymous said...

Now we got something to serve with you cold bean salad!

Anonymous said...

Looks great. But instead of heating up the kitchen in the summer could you smoke this cut like babyback ribs at 235 deg F for maybe 4 hrs?
I would think you could use the same rub sans oil and the same chimichurri style sauce. Maybe a light smoke like apple or pecan?

Chef John said...

Sure! Sounds great to me!

The Undercover Cook said...

Love lamb and love pork ribs. Never heard of lamb breast before. I will definitely have to take a look for it and give this recipe a try.

redpimiento said...

plz let me tell you , love your blog , when i grow old i wanna be like you

Anonymous said...

Chef John, I've come here from your YouTube channel to help support you and your blog. I'm loving your recipes and I watch them late at night whenever I feel hungry but also too lazy to cook. Cooking on a budget is often difficult for university students but I'm using your recipes as inspiration and hope to live and eat happily!

Thank you for all the videos! Best wishes from Australia!

BuenProvecho! said...

Chef, can you share what the "white bean" side dish is you showing in your video please. Saludos from South Mexico!

Chef John said...

I don't remember! Just canned beans and red peppers I think.

Jackie said...

I love lamb but have never had breast of lamb. I saw it at the store and had to get it. I had no idea how to prepare it though. Thank you for this delicious recipe! I was nervous about putting the cinnamon in the rub, but it tasted amazing! The sauce didn't taste that great when I first mixed it together. But once I put it on the! It complimented the meat SO well. I am glad I made a special trip to the store just to get the sauce ingredients! Thank you again for this wonderful recipe and video to go along with it!

Anonymous said...

This recipe is FANTASTIC!! LOVE it and the duck sous vide too.

Anonymous said...

This recipe is great and it is gluten free! We love it.

Anonymous said...

I love lamb chops but hate the price. I couldn't find any around Xmas for less than $25/lb which is just wrong. I happened upon lamb breast for $2/lb. Yea...$2/lb so I had to buy it to try. It's a VERY fatty cut but so very yummy. It has the great lamb flavor without being overpowering like shanks sometimes are. I love the rub you used but would probably add just a tad bit of cayenne & honey next time. I just did the first part of the recipe tonight and will make the sauce tomorrow if there is ANY of the lamb left. I did roast for nearly 4 hrs as I was trying to get the fat to melt out. Very very rich & decadent considering it's usually a 'throw away' cut of meat. :)

Unknown said...

Just bought a lamb breast from the grocery store and had no clue what to do with it. I am following your recipe right now It is in the oven. I can't wait to eat it. :D

Adam A said...

Chef John,

I'm planning to try and add a bit of smoke to this recipe in the barbecue. Should I or should I not brine the breast to make it slightly juicier? Am Planning to use the brine recipe from your pork loin. How long should I brine it for?

Thanks in advance...

Unknown said...

I decided on a whim to make this after finding lamb breast on sale after Easter. I found the cut of meat very reasonably priced at about $6/lbs at a major grocery retailer in my area (Kroger) likely because of the holiday.

This dish was amazing! Not a lot of work, but a very decadent result. I intend to make it again for my in-laws and think they will be impressed!

I paired it with a side of roasted baby portabella mushrooms and asperagus hollandaise. Superpurb. Wouldn't change a thing!

Unknown said...

I decided on a whim to make this dish after finding lamb breast on sale after the Easter holiday. I found it for the very reasonable price of $6/lbs at a major grocery retailer in my area (Kroger)- I'm guessing it was available for the holiday because I'd never seen it at that grocer before.

The dish turn out wonderful!! I made it for my fiance and I for a special dinner and it was superb. Not a lot of work but a very decadent result.

I intend to make it again for my inlaws. :)

Unknown said...

I have been feeling very bad for screwing up a nice bone in belly of pork. Then I cooked this joint today and I was knocking on the heaven's door~!
Thanks Chef as all ways for great recipes~!

Unknown said...

Man this was so friekin good....unbelievable flavor...hdid some sauteed asparagus and wild rice with a cabernet .... I did do a dallup of mint jelly on the side...sorry john,its the whoopjack in

Unknown said...

Absolutely Delicious!! The meat fell off the bone and it melted in your mouth. YUMMM!! The flavors, the spices, simply Fantastic! I am so glad I tried your recipe. When I had found this lamb breast meat on sale for a $1.00/lb, I could not pass it up! Never cooked lamb before, was a little worried about doing so, but I tried your recipe and OMG. Even the Sauce stuff was amazing with the meat, (I didn't think I would like the sauce). Keep up with the recipes!
Thank You so much!!