Ah, we were filming week two a couple weeks ago and Team Guy had an advantage. We got to pick our protein first. I went for the lamb chops because I love them, and I’ve made them many, many times. While we were standing around listening to Guy and Rachael, fresh strawberries were in the air. They smelled so fresh and fragrant. That’s when I knew: No matter what protein I picked, it was going to have a strawberry component. Lamb loves mint, and mint loves strawberries. I’m feeling good. I’m working with the grill again.
- 8 lamb chops
- 1 quart of strawberries
- 2 bunches of fresh mint
- 2 sheets of gelatin or 1 bottle of pectin
- 1/4 cup sugar
Dry Rub For Lamb Chops
- 1 tsp of garlic powder
- 5 Russet Potatoes
- 1 bunch of chives finely chopped
- 1 small container sour cream, or plain yogurt or crème fraiche
- 3 cloves garlic finely chopped
- 2 shallots finely chopped
- ¼ cup butter
- 4 tbsp olive oil
Pat chops dry, put in large bow. Pour olive oil over chops until all are lightly coated. You may not need all of the olive oil to cover chops, or you may need more. Depends on the size of the chops.
In a large bowl, mix all you ingredients together for you dry rub. Pour dry rub over you chops and massage in dry rub until every nook and cranny of the chops are covered. Set aside covered so the chops can come up to room temperature.
Wash your spuds and cut them lengthwise into ¼ inch slices. Put slices in salty water to stop them from browning. And give them a chance to hydrate and get seasoned by the salt. This is also known as brining. Most vegetables will absorb water if there left to soak, but in this case we’re not leaving them in there for too long, plus we want a little more moisture in our spuds because we’re putting them directly on a hot grill. The extra moisture will help steam the potato, and keep the edges from burning or cooking too quickly.
In a pot or large sauce pan, add your strawberries. You can either halve or quarter them. It doesn’t really matter as we are going to put them in a food processor or blender when they are done.
Cover the strawberries with water. Just enough to cover your strawberries. On a medium to high heat, bring the strawberries to a boil add the 1/3 cup of sugar and mix well. Turn down to a simmer and let reduce until the liquid in the pan just coats the back of a metal spoon. We’re looking to make a thick strawberry stew. In a small bowl add 2 gelatin sheets to some ice water to hydrate. If you’re using the mint sauce the same day, use the gelatin. If you’re making it in advance use the pectin as the mint sauce will have a chance to thicken over night. The gelatin will start to set in about 30 minutes.
Rough chop 2 heads of the fresh mint. Try not to get a lot of the mint stems in your chop. You don’t have to be fanatical about it, but just try to leave out as much as possible. Remember, this is going to get blitzed in a blender or food processor. Cook mint for 5 minutes just to wilt the mint and get the flavors of the mint into the strawberries. Put strawberry mint mixture in a blender or F/P and blend until smooth-ish. We don’t want a puree, but we don’t want it to be all chunky monkey. Pour into a bowl, fill a freezer bag full of ice, and submerge it into the strawberry mint sauce and get it in the fridge to cool, and get the gelatin doing its thing.
Drain your potatoes and pat dry, and place in a clean dry bowl. Add 4 tablespoons of olive oil, a good pinch of salt and pepper and coat your spuds. You may have to use more or less olive oil depending on the size of you spuds. Coat them thoroughly. On a hot BBQ grill or fry pan , get your spuds a cookin. We’re going to flip them 4 times for roughly 3 to 5 minutes, and cook until for tender. Now, if you’re using a BBQ grill, don’t be afraid to get some charring or grill marks on your potato slices. It looks good and adds flavor. The same goes for a fry pan – get them golden brown and crispy! When done put in an uncovered oven proof bowl and put in the oven at 250F to keep warm. Get your diced garlic, shallots and ¼ cup of butter in a fry pan. Melt butter first on medium heat, then add garlic and shallots, some S and P, and cook until there soft, but with NO browning. Pour over you potatoes and toss lightly to cover your spuds. Put back in oven to keep warm, and hold for service.
On a super hot grill, lightly brush it with some vegetable oil on a paper towel, then put your chops on. We’re going to flip these 4 times for 3 to 4 minutes a flip. We’re going for medium rare to medium. I like to call it RARE-DIUM. If using a fry pan, place your chops in a hot pan with a bit of vegetable oil. Sear one side for 2 minutes, then sear the other. Place fry pan in a 350F oven to finish them off, about 5 to 8 minutes. Don’t worry about raising the heat in the oven from 250F to 350F – the potatoes are not going to be in there for long. When chops are done (grill or pan) plate them family style and cover with foil wrap to keep them warm, and to rest before serving.
Remove potatoes, plate one layer of potatoes, then hit each one with a good tsp of sour cream, yogurt or crème fraiche. Sprinkle with finely chopped chives, then build another layer. Continue until you’ve used up all the spuds. Pour strawberry mint sauce over your chops, grab your spuds and serve. This dish goes nicely with some grilled corn on the cobb, or grilled corn removed from the cobb and tossed with some sautéed jalapenos.
1. The method of cooling down the strawberry mint sauce is usually done with an ice torpedo. It actually looks like a hallow torpedo with a handle. You fill up the torpedo with water, and put it in your freezer. When it is frozen, you stick it in the liquid, sauce, soup or stock to cool it done. If you don’t happen to have this piece of equipment around the house ( quite frankly who does.??) a zip lock bag full of ice will do the trick. In fact, you should have some on the ready in your freezer. Fill zip locks with water and freeze. If you have kids, they’ll also come in handy for bumps and bruises.
2. When using a gas grill, keep one side on a high heat, and the other on a low heat or turned off completely. This way you can use the really hot side for searing, and the cooler side for continuing to cook your item, or keep it warm. When the lid is closed it works as an oven. The heat rises and hits the top of the lid and gets circulated around the inside of the grill. Also, don’t use the “warming” rack on a BBQ. It doesn’t warm, it cooks. First thing I do when I get a grill, is remove it.
3. Always hit the items on you grill every flip with a bit of S and P. It will replace the seasonings that have fallen off your item. A grill is not like a fry pan, if your seasoning falls off your item in a fry pan, it stays in the fry pan. On a grill it falls off your item and into the embers or burners.