In the mountainous regions of Italy and islands where it is hard to raise cattle, sheep and goats take precedence and are king of the hills. Lamb or Agnello is the baby sheep and is perfect around the months of spring. Like a cheese the younger the animal the more delicate and soft the meat is and as the lamb gets older and develops as too the texture and flavor of its meat.
Sheep in italy are mostly used and known for there production of cheese known as pecorino a staple in any Italian diet and found in almost every home, but on the rare occasions and special holiday’s such as easter with lamb also regarded as a religious symbol or rebirth and rejuvenation.
— 3 frenched racks of lamb
— 2 medium lemons
— 1 bunch of mint leaves
— Sea salt
— Black pepper
— Extra virgin olive oil
- Finely grate zest from the lemons and then juice. Combine the zest and juice with the mint, garlic, pinch of salt and pepper, place in a food processor (if you don’t have a food processor just chop very finely). Pulse a few times and then with the motor running, adding the oil. Reserve some “salsa verde” (mint sauce) until the end.
- Trim the fat on the lamb racks to a 1/4 -inch-thick layer. Poke holes all over the lamb with a fork to help the marinade penetrate. Lightly score the fat layer into diamond pattern. Arrange the racks, fat side up, in a baking dish, overlapping the bones if necessary to fit the racks in the dish. Brush the remaining salsa Verde all over the racks. Cover and refrigerate for at least 8 hours and up to 24 hours.
- Heat the oven to 180C (425°F). Take the lamb out of the fridge and arrange the racks fat side up in a large roasting pan (or rimmed baking sheet) they should fit in one layer. Brush the top and sides of each rack with some of the reserved salsa Verde.
- Roast for 15 minutes. Brush with 1 Tbs. more of the salsa verde and continue to roast to an internal temperature of 50°C to 55C (130F – 135°F) for medium rare, an additional 15 to 20 minutes. Let the meat rest for 5 minutes before carving into chops. Drizzle the remaining salsa Verde over each serving and enjoy.