Any occasion is good enough for this spice-crusted lamb. Slathered and then seared with an array of herbs and spices, the crunchy lamb crust then gives way to a tender fillet, a contrast that completes with a haphazard toss of white bean and tomato salad.
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- 2 x 150 g lamb neck fillets
- 1 tbsp coriander seeds
- 1 tbsp fennel seeds
- 1 tbsp cumin seeds
- Generous pinch of dried chilli flakes
- 2 cloves of garlic, thinly sliced
- 6 tbsp olive oil
- 1 lemon, zest & juice
- Handful of fresh basil leaves
- Sea salt and freshly ground pepper
WHITE BEAN & PUY BEAN SALAD
- 1 clove of garlic, finely chopped
- 1 tbsp red wine vinegar
- 3 tbsps extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 red onion, finely sliced
- 1 x 400 g tin white beans (such as cannellini or butter beans), drained and rinsed
- 1 x 400g tin puy lentils, drained and rinsed
- 500 g ripe vine tomatoes, cut into thin wedges
- Small handful fresh thyme leaves
- 1 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil
First up, make the spice mix. Roughly crush the fennel, cumin and coriander seeds alongside the chilli flakes in a pestle and mortar and generously season with sea salt.
Add the lamb to a bowl and dust liberally with about half of the spice mix, scatter over the chopped garlic, and 2 tbsps of the olive oil and the lemon zest. Gently toss to cover the lamb and leave aside.
For your salad, in a large bowl, add the garlic, red wine vinegar, olive oil, season with salt and pepper and mix well. Add in the red onion along with the white beans and puy lentils. Toss well.
Into another bowl, add tomatoes, sprigs of thyme and drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
Heat a pan over a high heat. Once it reaches a high temperature, sear the lamb on each side for 2-3 mins. Remove and leave to rest.
To the hot pan, add lemon juice, about 3 tbsps of olive oil, the remainder of your spice mixture and stir well, allowing to cook for a moment. Take off heat and spoon 3-4 tbsps over the tomatoes.
Thinly slice the lamb steaks and add back into the spiced oil mixture in the pan, allowing to fully coat & absorb the oil.
Put the tomatoes and beans on a serving platter and add the lamb on top.
Garnish with fresh basil leaves and a final drizzle of olive oil.
TIP You could also make this dish with Puy lentils or chickpeas instead of beans.