Lamb Chops with Pistachio Tapenade

Adapted fromĀ smitten kitchen (via Anne Burrell)

My kids love any old excuse to get out the food processor. The tapenade makes a generous recipe, so reserve some to enjoy later with crackers or cut raw vegetables.

  • 1/2 cup roasted, salted pistachios, unshelled
  • 1/2 cup pitted green olives
  • 2 tablespoons capers, drained
  • 2 garlic cloves, smashed
  • 1 tablespoon fresh oregano leaves
  • 2 tablespoons flat-leaf parsley, roughly chopped
  • Olive oil
  • 6 lamb chops
  • Kosher salt
  • Black pepper
  • Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.
  • To make the tapenade, combine the pistachios, olives, capers, garlic, oregano and parsley in a food processor. Slowly drizzle a stream of olive oil into the food processor while it’s running. When the mixture resembles a thick paste, you’ve added enough olive oil. Set aside.
  • Lay the lamb chops out and sprinkle them generously with salt and black pepper on both sides. Allow them to sit out on the counter for about 20 minutes before cooking them. I have no evidence to back this up, but I think the flavor improves a bit if you let the meat sit out seasoned for just a little while. If you are in a rush, you can skip this step and I’m sure you’ll enjoy these chops just fine anyway.
  • Heat a tablespoon of olive oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Roll the pan around a bit to ensure that the oil evenly coats the pan. Place the lamp chops in the pan and cook for 2 minutes on each side in order to brown. They should be golden and a bit crispy on each side. Move them to a baking sheet. Apply a generous dollop of tapenade to each lamb chop, then place the pan in the oven and roast for another 5 minutes for rare or 7 minutes for medium rare. Remove them from the oven and allow them to rest for 5 minutes before serving.
  • Serve with extra tapenade on the side.
  • Quick Tips
  • 1. This recipe also calls for lemon zest in the tapenade, but I completely forgot it. It tasted great anyway. If you care to add it, throw it in just after you’ve added the olive oil. Oops.
  • 2. My 5-year-old was so crazy for this tapenade that I want to find new uses for it! It is extremely flavorful, so you only need a little. It would make a terrific sandwich spread, though as is the case at many schools these days, I can’t put a nut-laden tapenade in the lunchbox. If you think of new uses for this tapenade, post a comment here! I’d love to hear about it.

Preparation time: 20 minute(s)

Cooking time: 15 minute(s)

Number of servings (yield): 4

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