Savory sumac-rubbed lamb chops are a stellar main dish for a dinner with Mediterranean flair.
Like most Americans, my first taste of lamb came in the form of a gyro. Or, at least what passed for a gyro in Wisconsin in 1991. Though gyro meat is often a combination of beef and lamb, it was my first glimpse into a style of food I knew nothing about, and subconsciously, I was hooked.
Mediterranean food is one of my favorite cuisines, not only because it is so fragrant, fresh, and flavorful, but it encompasses a wide range within itself. Just like American cuisine has its distinct regions, the food of the Mediterranean takes on its location. I got hooked on hummus on the shores of Caesarea while listening to Cher blast out over the sea. You tell me that isn’t magical.
In my explorations with food this year, I’ve kept returning to lamb. It doesn’t hurt that I attended a great lamb 101 course during the Byte of Texas conference, but I have been adding lamb to our diets more and more. Although the strong flavor doesn’t appeal to everyone, I think it’s a great base for the intense herbs and spices of Mediterranean cuisine.
For this dish I splurged and picked up a few lamb chops, knowing it would be a meal for just my husband and I. While there are many ways to prepare lamb, this simple recipe uses an easy rub of sumac, thyme, salt, and pepper. Now, sumac is not often found on the grocery store shelves, but if you live in an area with gourmet or international grocers, you should be able to find it.
Welcome to another installment of Progressive Eats, our virtual version of a progressive dinner party. I’m thrilled to be hosting this month’s theme: A Mediterranean Feast! Try something new for the New Year; a mix of appetizers, salads, main dish and desserts all featuring recipes with a Mediterranean look and feel.
If you’re unfamiliar with the concept, a progressive dinner involves going from house to house, enjoying a different course at each location. With Progressive Eats, a theme is chosen each month, members share recipes suitable for a delicious meal or party, and you can hop from blog to blog to check them out.
We have a core group of 12 bloggers, but we will always need substitutes and if there is enough interest would consider additional groups. To see our upcoming themes and how you can participate, please check out the schedule at Creative Culinary or contact Barb for more information.
Check out the entire menu below!
- Spiced Chickpeas with Feta and Preserved Lemon from Healthy Delicious
- Greek Roasted Lemon Cauliflower and Potatoes with Feta Cheese from Jeanette’s Healthy Living
- Ricotta and Herb Stuffed Eggplant from Lana’s Cooking
- Vassilopitta (New Year Wish Cake) from girlichef
- Orange Chocolate Olive Oil Marble Cake from Life’s A Feast
Are you ready to get the main course on the table? This recipe is a snap to put together, and because lamb chops cook quickly, you can have them ready to go in 15 minutes.
Sumac Lamb Chops with Pomegranate Relish
- 2 tablespoons olive oil divided
- 4 lamb rib chops
- 2 teaspoons ground sumac
- 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
- Salt and pepper
- 1/2 cup pomegranate arils
- 1 tablespoon minced onion
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
- Cooked rice to serve optional
Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat.
Rub 1 tablespoon oil on all sides of lamb chops.
Stir together sumac, thyme, and salt and pepper to taste, and rub equal amounts onto each chop, all sides.
Cook chops in the skillet, 3-4 minutes per side. Remove and let rest.
Mix together pomegranate arils, onion, and parsley. Serve with lamb.
You can buy packaged pomegranate arils, or whole pomegranate. I find lightly hitting the pomegranate on the counter a few times before cutting it open helps release the arils more easily.
For more tasty inspiration, check out my Recipes from Stetted board on Pinterest!
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