Rack of lamb with Harissa (or ‘give turkey a break’)


Don’t ask, but Salmon found himself in charge over Christmas this year. Unprecedented and – judging by Trota’s reaction – it may never happen again. Anyway, trying to be festive and also wanting to avoid the usual turkey, Salmon thought he’d really push the boat out…but probably wished he’d gone fishing instead…

Rack of lamb with Harissa

harissa lamb

To make this simple but tasty dish you will indeed need a rack of lamb and a small jar of Harissa paste (Salmon found both at the supermarket). He bought a 90g jar and used most of it – coating the lamb on all sides then marinating it in the fridge for 1 hour (or longer, if you have time).

Cook in the oven at 190°/gas 5 for about 30min. Check the guidelines on the packaging, as time may vary depending on the size of your cut. If you are really fussy, you can cover the bones with foil to avoid charring.

As you know, Salmon is a big fan of basic food so he decided to serve the Harissa lamb with mash and roasted pumpkin: pumpkin because Trota had already roasted one, so no effort there (by the way, pumpkin is the guest ingredient this season: Fidget’s ancestors are of farming stock and the Rowes were given quite a few pumpkins this year) and mash for obvious reasons…

So, back to Salmon and the festive mash. Couldn’t be easier: boil and drain your (ideally floury) potatoes, cool sufficiently to peel, put them back in the pan and mash. Add milk to give the desired consistency, pinch of grated nutmeg, grated parmesan to taste, a knob of butter and seasonings. Stir and cook on a low heat for 10min or so.

When your lamb is cooked – your choice if you prefer it well done (chez Rowe it’s pink) –  let it rest for 10min then cut and serve with the mash and/or other favourite vegetables.

Actually, Salmon needn’t have sweated the presentation: it was a taste triumph and, for a while at least, Trota was speechless. So who needs turkey?