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December 8, 2023 - Recipes

Lamb Racks with Mint Chimichurri

Send the invitations and heat the barbeque: Cloudy Bay Executive Chef Toby Stuart shares this stunning recipe for grilled lamb racks with mint chimichurri. Cooking for a group of people can seem like a big job, but it doesn’t have to be. This recipe is here to prove it.

Grilled lamb racks make a superstar centrepiece for any meal. This recipe is surprisingly simple; with herby oil and a few vegetables, you can serve a memorable feast with minimal fuss.

While you can cook this on the barbecue or even in the oven, cooking on an outdoor grill over an open fire is a great way to infuse the meal with a memorable sense of occasion. Guests will likely queue up to enjoy the cooking smells or brush over the fragrant herbed oil as the food sizzles away.

This recipe is perfect for four adults; multiply as needed based on your guest list.

Wine match suggestions: Cloudy Bay Pinot Noir or Cloudy Bay Te Wahi Pinot Noir.


Serves 4
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons dried oregano
4 tablespoons red or white wine vinegar
1/2 cup of extra virgin olive oil
2 stalks rosemary, plus a few extra to use as a basting brush
4 stalks thyme, plus a few extra to use as a basting brush
1 bunch baby carrots with tops
2 x 6 bone racks of lamb, halved
1/2 green cabbage
4 red chillies
1 head roasted garlic
A small bunch of mint
A small bunch of parsley

Make Ahead

1) To make the roasted garlic, preheat the oven to 200C. Peel the outer papery layers from the garlic head. Slice around 1cm off the top, drizzle the exposed clove tops with olive oil, then wrap loosely in tinfoil. Roast for around 30 minutes, remove and set aside to cool.
2) To make the herbed oil basting liquid, bring half a cup/ 125ml of water to the boil with the salt and boil to dissolve. Add the dried oregano and set aside to cool. Whisk in the vinegar and olive oil and pour into a large jar or container to transport.

On Location

1) Heat your grill over an open fire, or set the barbecue to high heat.
2) Finely chop the rosemary and thyme and add to the herb oil you made earlier. Pour about half into another container to brush on the lamb and vegetables as they cook.
3) Chop the tops off the carrots and set aside. Cut the cabbage into 4-5 wedges.

4) Put the lamb, carrots, cabbage and chillies onto the grill and cook, basting with the herb oil, for about 20-25 minutes until done to your liking (the chillies will take about 10 minutes).
5) Sort through the carrot tops, choosing nice fresh-looking leaves. Measure out about half a cup worth, chop very finely and put in a bowl.
6) Finely chop the mint, parsley and roasted chilli, and add to the bowl.

7) Squeeze the garlic cloves out from the skin and mash with the back of a knife then add to the bowl.
8) Add the remaining herb oil to the bowl and mix well.
9) Arrange the lamb, carrots and cabbage on a platter and spoon over some chimichurri. Serve remaining chimichurri on the side.

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