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Lamb Rack with Harissa, Beans & Yoghurt Mash

From: Every Night of the Week by Lucy Tweed

Serves 4-6

This has that lip-smacking, sauce-scooping, salty tang element that I often crave.

1 cup (180 g) kalamata olives, pitted 1 tablespoon harissa 2 tablespoons tomato paste (concentrated puree) 3 tablespoons olive oil 1.2 kg (2 lb 10 oz) rack of lamb, frenched and cut into 2 equal racks 500 g (1 lb 2 oz) cherry tomatoes 400 g (14 oz) tin cannellini beans, drained and rinsed 2 heads of garlic, halved horizontally 1 kg (2 lb 3 oz) russet or Dutch cream potatoes, peeled and cut into 2 cm pieces 50 g (1¾ oz) butter, chopped ½ cup (130 g) Greek-style yoghurt sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Optional ingredients

baby spinach and lemon wedges

Lamb conjures up all sorts of memories in our house, from my husband’s family farm in New Zealand where they toss shanks to the dogs, to my grandmother’s house that smelled of roasting lamb, woody chardonnay and Elizabeth Arden’s Red Door, no matter the time of day.

We had off milk in the fridge which led to the revelation that is Greek yoghurt mash.

The perfect zing to go with lamb fat and roast tomatoes.

Preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F).

Blitz the olives, harissa, tomato paste and 2 tablespoons of the oil until smooth, then spread all over the lamb meat.

Heat the remaining oil in a flameproof roasting tin over high heat and sear the lamb, fat-side down, until browned and starting to crisp up.

Set the lamb aside and wipe out any really burnt bits from the tin.

Arrange the tomatoes, beans and garlic in the tin and sit the lamb on top.

Roast for 25–30 minutes if you like your lamb pink, or add another 15 minutes if you prefer it grey. (My grandmother always insisted that perfect doneness was subjective; however, that subjective window was VERY narrow. I inherited this compassionate level of judgery from her.)

Rest the lamb in a warm place for 15 minutes.

While the lamb is roasting, make the mash. Boil the potato in a large saucepan of salted water for 15 minutes or until soft. Drain and return to the pan.

Add the butter and yoghurt and mash to your preferred consistency. Season to taste and keep warm until the lamb is ready.

When you dish up, serve the garlic in whole chunks and let people squeeze the pockets of golden gooey garlic into their dinner, or mouths.

‘Images and text from Every Night of the Week by Lucy Tweed; photography by Lucy Tweed. Murdoch Books RRP $35.00.’


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