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Seared Lamb Chops with Lemon Pistachio Crumbs and Polenta

Winter 2009
200901016.jpg
food and drink

BY: Marilyn Bentz-Crowley

This entrée is very quick to make so merely assemble all the measured ingredients and cook when nearly ready to dine. If you prefer boneless lamb, purchase lamb souvlaki as the flavour works well with the polenta and crumbs. The interesting crumbs are delicious enough to make extra to strew over fish or tossed salad.

Polenta
3 cups (750 mL) chicken stock or broth
1 cup (250 mL) coarse cornmeal for polenta
⅛ to ¼ tsp (0.5 to 1 mL) crushed chili flakes
½ cup (125 mL) freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1 tbsp (15 mL) finely chopped fresh parsley
Pinches of salt

Crumbs
1 tbsp (15 mL) olive oil
1 large garlic clove, minced
⅛ tsp (0.5 mL) tsp each of salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 cup (250 mL) very coarse fresh bread crumbs (see TIP)
1 tsp (15 mL) finely shredded lemon zest
2 tbsp (25 mL) each of chopped fresh mint and parsley
½ cup (125 mL) coarsely chopped pistachios

Lamb
1 tbsp (15 mL) olive oil
8 loin lamb chops or lamb souvlaki

1. Bring stock to a rolling boil. Slowly stir in cornmeal and chili flakes. Reduce heat to medium-low; cover. Stirring occasionally, cook 5 to 7 minutes. Keep warm, covered over very low heat. When ready to serve, stir in Parmesan and parsley. Taste and add pinches of salt as needed. If too thick, stir in tablespoons of boiling water until the texture of softly mashed potatoes.

2. In a large frying pan, heat 1 tbsp (15 mL) oil and garlic over medium heat until hot; stir in salt and pepper. Add bread crumbs all at once. Cook, turning with a large spatula for 4 to 5 minutes or until golden and crisp. Stir in zest and fresh herbs; stir frequently for 1 minute. Stir in nuts; turn out of pan and cool.

3. Wipe out pan with a paper towel. Add remaining tbsp (15 mL) of oil. When hot, add chops or souvlaki. Sauté chops 4 to 6 minutes per side for medium-rare to medium (souvlaki need a minute or 2 less on each side).

4. Meanwhile, divide polenta among very warm serving plates. Top with hot chops; generously strew crumbs over top. Serve immediately.

TIP: Use coarse-textured bread such as ciabatta. Without removing crusts, coarsely cube and pulse in a food processor until largish crumbs form.

Serves 4

What to Serve

LCBO#:572453
$8.30  
LCBO#:136978
$2.95  
200901016.jpg
food and drink

Seared Lamb Chops with Lemon Pistachio Crumbs and Polenta

Winter 2009

BY: Marilyn Bentz-Crowley

This entrée is very quick to make so merely assemble all the measured ingredients and cook when nearly ready to dine. If you prefer boneless lamb, purchase lamb souvlaki as the flavour works well with the polenta and crumbs. The interesting crumbs are delicious enough to make extra to strew over fish or tossed salad.

Polenta
3 cups (750 mL) chicken stock or broth
1 cup (250 mL) coarse cornmeal for polenta
⅛ to ¼ tsp (0.5 to 1 mL) crushed chili flakes
½ cup (125 mL) freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1 tbsp (15 mL) finely chopped fresh parsley
Pinches of salt

Crumbs
1 tbsp (15 mL) olive oil
1 large garlic clove, minced
⅛ tsp (0.5 mL) tsp each of salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 cup (250 mL) very coarse fresh bread crumbs (see TIP)
1 tsp (15 mL) finely shredded lemon zest
2 tbsp (25 mL) each of chopped fresh mint and parsley
½ cup (125 mL) coarsely chopped pistachios

Lamb
1 tbsp (15 mL) olive oil
8 loin lamb chops or lamb souvlaki

1. Bring stock to a rolling boil. Slowly stir in cornmeal and chili flakes. Reduce heat to medium-low; cover. Stirring occasionally, cook 5 to 7 minutes. Keep warm, covered over very low heat. When ready to serve, stir in Parmesan and parsley. Taste and add pinches of salt as needed. If too thick, stir in tablespoons of boiling water until the texture of softly mashed potatoes.

2. In a large frying pan, heat 1 tbsp (15 mL) oil and garlic over medium heat until hot; stir in salt and pepper. Add bread crumbs all at once. Cook, turning with a large spatula for 4 to 5 minutes or until golden and crisp. Stir in zest and fresh herbs; stir frequently for 1 minute. Stir in nuts; turn out of pan and cool.

3. Wipe out pan with a paper towel. Add remaining tbsp (15 mL) of oil. When hot, add chops or souvlaki. Sauté chops 4 to 6 minutes per side for medium-rare to medium (souvlaki need a minute or 2 less on each side).

4. Meanwhile, divide polenta among very warm serving plates. Top with hot chops; generously strew crumbs over top. Serve immediately.

TIP: Use coarse-textured bread such as ciabatta. Without removing crusts, coarsely cube and pulse in a food processor until largish crumbs form.

Serves 4

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