I am preparing racks of lamb for a crowd. Can I sear them ahead of time and if so, how far in advance of putting them in the oven??

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5 Comments

ChefJune January 28, 2016
You can sear them ahead, or you can remove that step altogether. I just turn up the temp to 425 for the last few minutes of roasting and they get nice and brown.
 
Tony S. January 28, 2016
We eat rack of lamb on Christmas day and I sear the rack in the morning then pop it back in the fridge until 4 PM or so.... I make sure to sear them right of the fridge so they are cold, to avoid overcooking. Then, before dinnertime, I leave them on the counter for 30 minutes and place them in a hot oven (425). They turn out perfectly cooked.
 
scruz January 25, 2016
i no longer sear the racks i prepare. if i want a browner top and some caramelized fat, i put them under the broiler for a short time. i always use the instant read thermometer so i don't overdo them.
 
amysarah January 24, 2016
Here's a recipe (from the Viking range site) the explains how to do it: http://www.vikingrange.com/consumer/lifestyle/recipe.jsp?id=prod3930157
 
702551 January 24, 2016
This is a tricky question since there are variables like rack size, initial meat temperature, searing temperature, meat temperature after searing, cooling time, ambient temperature during the resting phase, final roasting temperature, etc.

Of course, the longer the interval between the sear and the final roasting will cool the meat more, requiring the final roast to be longer.

Moreover, the racks should be fully cooked and rested shortly before serving. Of all the commonly served red meats, I find that congealed lamb fat to be decidedly unappealing.

Unless you are a meat cooking expert and have considerable and frequent experience cooking racks of lamb, I would limit the interval between the sear and final cooking to 15-20 minutes. It is simply easier to predict how the meat will react to the various cooking stages when done in a normal procession of steps.

Depending on the nature of your meal and how service proceeds, you may want to stage the lamb to finish at different times. If you don't need all the racks to be served at the same instant, you are better off having some finish early and some finish later because of the unpleasant cold lamb fat issue I mentioned earlier.

This is largely a judgment call based on your confidence in your own lamb roasting skills and how your event will unfold. You can tent your finished racks with aluminum foil for 15-20 minutes, but the fat will start to cool after that.

Again, much of this will be about what *you* consider to be acceptable quality for serving.

Good luck.
 
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