Lamb chops with anchovy aioli

One of the more unusual flavour combinations I was introduced to when I started my chef

apprenticeship about 30 years ago was the marriage of anchovy and lamb. The salty nature

of anchovies works so well with lamb, that I have used this combination in many ways since

that first encounter. Try this classic surf and turf for yourself, I know you’ll be convinced.

LAMB CHOPS WITH ANCHOVY AIOLI

Serves 4

4 x 180 g lamb forequarter chops

sea salt and freshly ground

black pepper

1 pinch of dried mint

½ teaspoon ground cumin

3 tablespoons coconut oil or good-quality animal fat

Anchovy aioli

6 jarred salted anchovy fillets, rinsed and patted dry, finely chopped

1 tablespoon finely chopped dill fronds

1 tablespoon finely chopped flat-leaf parsley leaves

250 g (1 cup) Aioli (see recipe below)

sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Place all the anchovy aioli ingredients in a bowl and mix to combine. Taste and season with more salt and pepper if needed.

Season the lamb chops with salt and pepper and sprinkle over the dried mint and cumin.

Heat the coconut oil or animal fat in a large frying pan over medium–high heat. Add the lamb and cook, turning occasionally, for 6–7 minutes for medium–rare (or cook to your liking). Transfer to a plate and allow to rest for 5 minutes, keeping warm.

Serve the lamb chops with the anchovy aioli.

AIOLI

Makes 470 g

6 roasted garlic cloves

4 egg yolks

2 teaspoons Dijon mustard

2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar

1 ½ tablespoons lemon juice

420 ml (1 cups) olive oil

sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Combine the garlic, egg yolks, mustard, vinegar, lemon juice and olive oil in a glass jug. Using a hand-held blender, blend, working the blade from the bottom of the jug slowly to the top, until thick and creamy. Alternatively, place the garlic, egg yolks, mustard, vinegar and lemon juice in a food processor and process until combined. With the motor running, slowly pour in the oil in a thin, steady stream and process until the aioli is thick and creamy. Season with salt and pepper. 

Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days.

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