Herb and Mustard-Crusted Rack of Lamb

March 16, 2016
14 Ratings
Photo by James Ransom
  • Serves 4
Author Notes

In the Mediterranean, lamb is what’s eaten in the spring—for Easter, Passover, Norooz, and, if it falls in spring, Eid. It's usually very young lamb that’s eaten, barely weaned if at all, the meat pale pink and mild, with none of the gamy-ness older lamb has. Simply roasted or grilled, it is a centerpiece of Easter Sunday meals all over Italy and what I always want to cook myself, especially when paired with some fresh spring vegetables: fava beans, asparagus, or tender small artichokes if I can find them. This is a really easy dish to prepare, yet looks beautiful and dramatic as a centerpiece of the table. —Sara Jenkins

What You'll Need
  • 1 cleaned 8-rib lamb rack (about 2 pounds)
  • 1/4 cup grainy Dijon mustard
  • 1 cloves of garlic
  • 1 sprig each of rosemary, sage, and marjoram
  • 3 sprigs thyme
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tablespoon fennel pollen (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon cracked black pepper
  1. Preheat the oven to 450° F. Chop up the garlic and herbs in the food processor. When they are well chopped, add the mustard and purée until a smooth paste forms.
  2. Smear the paste over the exterior of the lamb and place on a roasting pan. Season liberally with sea salt and roast for 15 minutes at 450° F. Turn the oven down to 325° F and cook for 30 to 40 minutes more, or until a meat thermometer registers 130 to 140° for rare to medium-rare. Let the roast rest for 15 minutes before carving and serving.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Melissa Y
    Melissa Y
  • Danielle van Heeckeren
    Danielle van Heeckeren
  • judy

3 Reviews

Melissa Y. April 26, 2023
Lamb is hard because it’s so expensive, you always hesitate to try new recipes once you find a good one. Luckily, this one knocked it out of the park! The mustard and spice rub was fantastic! I would use it on anything! If anyone has anything else they’d suggest it on, happy to hear it!
Danielle V. September 17, 2022
Delicious, but if you are not using a meat thermometer, 30-40 minutes is WAY TOO LONG for medium rare. I took it out at 20 minutes and it was medium well. I would suggest turning it off entirely and leaving it in for 1-15 for medium rare.
judy February 21, 2020
forget the rack of lamb. Buy chops. Easier, cheaper, meatier and much tastier. And more meat for your money. Or shoulder chops. Easy to cook. Ramsey is about over the top presentation. And that has it's place, I guess. but I live in a studio apartment with only a good toaster oven, and a sensitive smoke alarm. The marinade is excellent on chops as well as shoulder outs. I cut off most of the fat instead of leaving it on. Too much for my little oven. I make lardons, and use them for the fat in a mushroom and baked potato hash to serve on the side. Add green beans,, steamed spinach or other green side dish of your choice. And you have a GREAT meal. Colcannon, the Irish potato and kale or cabbage mash, is also very good.