Grilled Rack of Lamb with Eggplant Salad & Bacon Fat Tortillas
Grilling a rack of lamb may seem daunting, but it couldn’t be easier. Before you grill the lamb, make sure to cut as much surface fat as you can to avoid sooty flare ups. In this recipe, I season the lamb with za’atar, a Middle Eastern spice that pairs well with the eggplant, tomato and feta salad. You can buy tortillas to complete the meal, but my homemade version—a hybrid dough that’s somewhere between a tortilla and naan—is on a whole different level from its store-bought sibling. Don’t be intimidated, they’re fun to make and fairly simple.
I’m using a Kudu grill—my new obsession—but you can make this recipe on any grill.
Watch Andrew make this recipe:
Andrew Zimmern Cooks Grilled Rack of Lamb with Eggplant Salad
Bacon Fat Tortillas
- 4 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1/2 cup chilled rendered bacon fat
- 1 1/2 cups water
- 1/4 cup minced scallions
- 2 racks of lamb, frenched
- 3 tablespoons za’atar, plus more for garnish
Grilled Eggplant Salad
- 1/2 large globe eggplant, cut into ½-inch slices
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 2 leeks, halved lengthwise and cleaned
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
- 1 cup feta cheese, crumbled
- 2 tablespoons mint, thinly sliced
- 2 tablespoons shallot, minced
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons sherry wine vinegar
Make the Tortillas
In a large bowl, whisk the flour with the baking powder and salt. Add the bacon fat and mix with your hands to evenly moisten the flour. Add the water and scallions and stir just until the dough comes together. Scrape the dough out onto a floured work surface and knead just until smooth. Roll the dough into 20 even balls and transfer to a baking sheet. Cover with plastic wrap and let stand for 20 minutes.
On a lightly floured work surface, dust a ball of dough with flour and roll it out to a 9-inch round. Layer the tortillas between sheets of parchment paper and refrigerate until you’re ready to put them on the grill.
Light the Grill
Prepare a grill for direct medium heat.
Trim the excess fat from the lamb. Season each lamb rack with salt and za’atar. Place the lamb racks over the coals, meat side up. Cook for 5 minutes. Flip and continue to cook until medium rare and browned all over, about 10 more minutes. Cover the grill half way through, to grill/roast the lamb with convective heat.
Meanwhile, coat the eggplant slices and leeks with a tablespoon of olive oil, and season with salt and pepper. Place on the grill around the lamb, and cook until soft and charred, about 5-7 minutes.
Remove the lamb from the grill, and let rest. Remove the eggplant and leeks from the grill, and chop. Place in a big salad bowl, and add the cherry tomatoes, feta, mint, shallot, olive oil, lemon juice and sherry wine vinegar. Gently stir to combine. Reserve.
Place a few tortillas on the grill, and cook for 30 seconds, flip and cook for another 30 seconds. Place cooked tortillas on a plate and cover with a towel. Repeat with the remaining dough.
To serve, top a tortilla with a scoop of the eggplant salad and a couple lamb chops. Sprinkle a little salt and extra za’atar on the lamb chops to finish. Serve immediately.
Photograph by Madeleine Hill.