This grilled lamb chops recipe, aka scottadito, is easy as can be and succulent as heck. And it relies on a simple marinade of harissa, lemon, garlic, and olive oil.
These grilled lamb chops helped us finally understand why “lamb chop” is oft used as a term of endearment. Another term of endearment used in conjunction with this recipe is “scottadito,” which, according to the authors, is loosely translated in Rome “as ‘finger-blistering hot’ and alludes to the fact that no one can wait for the meat to cool before eating.” It’s a compliment, trust us, something you’ll understand as soon as you try these. Just try not to mind as everyone devours the diminutive dinner in not-so-dainty fashion, eschewing forks and knives and using their fingers instead. This recipe has been updated. Originally published April 13, 2014.–Renee Schettler Rossi
Grilled Lamb Chops Recipe
- Quick Glance
- 15 M
- 45 M
- Serves 4 to 6
- 2 cloves garlic, minced to a paste
- 2 to 4 tablespoons harissa
- 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- Juice of 1 lemon
- Two 8-rib racks of lamb, frenched
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 2 lemons, quartered
- 1. In a small bowl, whisk together the garlic, harissa, olive oil, and lemon juice. Pour half the harissa mixture into a second bowl.
- 2. Cut each rack of lamb in half into 4-rib pieces. (The lamb will be easier to cook plus everyone can have one or two crispy “end chops.”) Arrange the chops in a large roasting pan and brush with the harissa sauce from one of the bowls. Discard any harissa sauce that remains in that bowl. Cover the pan with plastic wrap and set aside at room temperature for 1 hour or refrigerate for 4 hours.
- 3. Prepare a medium-hot fire on one side of a charcoal grill. If using a gas grill, fire up the back burner to medium-hot heat. Grill the lamb in the center of the grill, moving it to a cooler spot if there are flare-ups. Turn the lamb as a brown crust develops. When the meat is browned all over, move it to the coolest spot on the grill to finish cooking, turning it occasionally, until the internal temperature reaches 125°F (52°C) for medium-rare, about 25 minutes. The grilling time will vary depending on your grill and the heat. Transfer the lamb to a cutting board, loosely cover with foil, and allow it to rest briefly, something like 5 to 10 minutes or so.
- 4. Cut the ribs into individual chops, pile them on a big platter, and season with salt and pepper. Serve with the remaining bowl of harissa sauce on the side along with some lemon wedges. (And yes, it’s okay to indelicately grab the lamb lollies with one’s fingers rather than struggle to use a knife and fork.)
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