After a flick through Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstalls Meat book, I discovered that contrary to popular belief spring lamb is not the best. These lambs would have been born in November or December of the previous year and are sometimes reared indoors. For a long time we have been led to believe that the first lambs are ready for our plates with the first rays of the spring sunshine.
By the laws of nature spring is the time when lambs are born not when they are ready to eat. They need a few months to mature which takes us into the summer time. The lambs born in the spring will have eaten the new fresh grass which has to be good news for us as surely it will improve the flavour and quality of the meat. With this in mind I went to my local butcher and bought some lamb chops. My lamb chops were brushed with a little olive oil and some oregano from my garden. This was a delicous meal and the lamb was very tasty indeed.
This recipe serves 2
For the tsatzki:
half a cucumber
250g natural yoghurt
2 spring onions
a handful of chopped fresh mint
Grate the cucumber into a sieve, sprinkle it lightly with sea salt and leave to drain for about half an hour. Tip the yoghurt into a bowl. Finely chop the spring onions and the mint leaves then stir them into the yoghurt. Squeeze any excess moisture from the cucumber then stir it into the yoghurt mixture. Keep it into the fridge until you need it.
Now for the lamb. I used the grill which is built into my oven but I think it would be fine to cook them in a griddle pan too. In a small bowl mix some olive oil with the oregano and some salt and black pepper then brush it over the lamb chops. Cook the lamb in a hot grill or in a griddle pan until it is dark and sizzling on the outside, the fat is crisp and the inside of the meat is a juicy pink. Serve with the tsatziki. I also served my lamb with some delicious buttery new potatoes.