Souk-Spiced Lamb Cutlets with Yoghurt and Tamarind Drizzle

Grilled meat is one of the staples of many a Middle Eastern nation. Lamb cutlets have the perfect ratio of meat to fat and a lovely bone to gnaw on once you’re done, which just adds to the pleasure of eating. The yoghurt and tamarind sauce are a perfect pairing with the spiced lamb cutlets and provide a wonderful contrast of flavours.

RECIPE INFO

Serves 4

Preparation Time
min

Cook time
min

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Cook's NoteTo check if the grill is hot enough add a few drops of cold water to the hot surface. If it sizzles and the water evaporates almost immediately, it is hot enough and ready for use. If the water produces steam and has no sizzle, heat the pan for a little longer and repeat the test again.
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INGREDIENTS

  • 8 x 2,5cm thick lamb chops
  • 2 fat cloves of garlic, crushed
  • 2 teaspoons of cumin seeds
  • 2 teaspoons of dried mint
  • 1 teaspoon of ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon of chilli flakes
  • ½ teaspoon of ground cloves
  • 4-5 tablespoons of olive oil
  • Zest of an unwaxed lime
  • Maldon sea salt and black pepper

To finish

  • 150g Greek yoghurt, thinned down with a little water to a pouring consistency
  • 5-6 tablespoons of sweetened tamarind sauce or tamarind extract sweetened with honey
  • Chilli flakes and Nigella seeds to garnish
  • Sea salt

METHOD

Put the lamb chops into a large bowl and add in the oil, spices, lime zest, seasonings and garlic and mix them really well into the meat ensuring that they coat the lamb chops well and evenly. Marinate the chops for a minimum of 1 hour to allow the flavours to permeate the meat (you can also marinate them overnight to cook the next day).

Pre-heat the grill on a medium heat setting. Test the temperature of the pan before adding the meat – see Cook’s notes – and when hot enough add the lamb and cook for 5-6 minutes on each side depending on thickness, or until cooked to your liking. Don’t be tempted to move the chops before this time; allow the surface to seal on the ribs of the pan. When cooked they will release easily.

Remove the chops and allow to rest for five minutes. Once rested, serve drizzled with yoghurt, tamarind sauce and a scatter of Nigella seeds and chilli flakes.