Sunday, 4 March 2012

World’s Easiest Masala Lamb Chops

Masala Lamb Chop with potato pakoras, chutney and curry leaf asparagus.
World’s Easiest Masala Lamb Chops
This is so easy it’s silly.

Buy a jar of an oil based curry paste.  I use a Madras curry paste, and always read the labels.  The one I have refuses to divulge the nature of the spices used, but I’m content to use it, because it tastes so good.  Oil is the third ingredient listed, so that tells me this will work.
Please notice I am NOT referring to the many jarred sauces available in every supermarket.  The curry pastes I’m referring to can be found in regular supermarkets in the Asian isle, but do read the label carefully!  A paste is not a sauce!
The Masala
1 generous tablespoon of oil based masala  per chop
The Rest
½ inch thick lamb shoulder chops (These are less expensive than the smaller, loin chops, and one is more than sufficient to serve per person.)  I find the fresh lamb chops in the supermarket are more tender than the New Zealand frozen packages of lamb chops.
If you have time to spare, you can do this up to 24 hours ahead, but if you need to do it at the last minute, that’s fine too.  Rub the tablespoon’s worth of oily masala into each chop, both sides.
Put your barbecue on at medium high.  Cook for about seven minutes on each side.  Some people like their lamb rare-ish, but I don’t.  If you do, adjust the cooking time accordingly.  Remove from heat when you consider them done and tent with aluminum foil for at least ten minutes before serving. 
How easy is that?  The masala in a jar works best, better than anything I’ve tried from scratch, mainly because the masala caramelises into something lovely, crunchy, and tantalizing, which perfectly sets off these succulent chops. 
Spring is rapidly approaching, which brings me to memories of my mother’s Easter dinner, which was often a leg of lamb with English mint sauce.  Since asparagus has suddenly arrived in the supermarket, I turned this into a spring lamb dinner, served with potato pakoras and cilantro mint chutney and curry leaf asparagus.  Wow!

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