It’s July, and the English lamb is really coming into its own. We’re well beyond our milk-fed, baby lambs now, so the meat we’re buying has a deeper colour and a fuller flavour, making it a perfect foil for the punch of the chipotle.
1 rack of lamb, about 8 chops in the piece
a small tin of chipotle in adobo
1 teaspoon dried Mexican oregano
salt and freshly ground black pepper
Preheat the oven to 210˚C.
Whizz the chipotle and adobo up in a blender until smooth. Mix 1 tablespoon of it together with a dash of olive oil and the oregano. Taste for seasoning, and if you need it, add some salt and pepper, and smother it onto the fat of the lamb.
Roast in the oven, sauce and skin-side up, for 25 minutes. Remove from the oven and set aside to rest.
Spoon out the excess fat from the roasting pan, leaving just under a tablespoon for flavour, and deglaze the pan with a glass of a fruity red wine.
Carve the lamb into its chops, which should be a perfect medium-pink, and serve, drizzled with pan juices, over salad of butter lettuce, chunked ripe avocado, coriander and cherry tomatoes.
The rest of the chipotle will keep in a fridge for a couple of weeks. You can use it for a host of Mexican dishes. It also mixes well with mayonnaise to make a fantastic tip, and adds a smoky heat to salad dressings too.