THE MEAT: Rack of lamb isn’t always easy to come by, but it’s always worth the effort when you get one (or two). You can usually pre-order a rack of lamb at a butcher shop or do we like we do and buy it at Costco. If you get it from your butcher, request that it be “French-cut” and it will have the fat trimmed off the bones.
THE METHOD: For the onions, you want to get some black char on them before you move them off the direct heat. By the time you take them off the grill they will be soft and smoky. The lamb chops need to start with a good sear and then need to be moved off the heat as well. Cover the bones with tin foil so when you transfer the lamb to the indirect side the bones don’t get too charred. And make sure to let the lamb sit for at least 10 minutes covered in tin foil once it’s done cooking, otherwise you’re going to watch all those delicious juices flow out and away when you cut into it.
THE MEAL: If you’re looking to get the meat sweats, you can serve these bad boys straight up with a knife and fork, but we advise cutting the rack into two-bone sections. You’ll get big thick chops that look impressive and have lots of good meat on them, then slather them with plenty of the grilled Cippolini onion sauce. For sides, think potatoes, green vegetables, couscous or rice.
Cooking with Fire: Grilled Rack of Lamb with Grilled Cippolini Onion Sauce
For the Cippolini sauce:
4 cippolini onions, outer layer removed, covered in olive oil, salt and pepper
¼ cup olive oil
1½ tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon dijon mustard
1 tablespoon minced garlic
2 teaspoons chopped thyme
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
For the lamb:
2 racks lamb, about 1½ pounds each
¼ cup dijon mustard
Freshly ground black pepper
Set up your grill for direct and indirect cooking, with the coals under half the grate. Cook the onions directly over the coals, constantly flipping for 2-3 minutes. Set the onions on the indirect cooking side, cover the grill with the lid, and let the onions cook for another 10 minutes. Remove from the grill and allow to cool. While the onions are cooling, whisk together remaining sauce ingredients. Then, chop the grilled onions and stir them into the vinaigrette.
Remove the lamb chops from the fridge about 30 minutes before you plan to grill. Rub them generously with the dijon mustard, salt and pepper. Sear them over direct heat for about two minutes each side, then move them away from the coals. Cover the bones with aluminum foil, cover the grill, and allow the chops to cook for about 15 more minutes for medium rare.
Let them sit for 10 minutes before slicing, then serve with plenty of the grilled Cippolini onion sauce.