Spice-Crusted Lamb Rack with Spinach and Baby Beet Salad

, from Issue #56. October, 2016
Photography by Sarah Tuck.
Spice-Crusted Lamb Rack with Spinach and Baby Beet Salad

Most of the components in this dish are easy to prepare ahead of time, making this perfect, simple spring-time entertaining.

Serves: 4


12–16 baby beetroot
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons honey
1 teaspoon ground cumin
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
French-trimmed lamb racks, providing 4–5 cutlets per person
4 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons cumin seeds, crushed
½ teaspoon chilli flakes 
1 teaspoon ground coriander
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons sesame seeds
1 small red onion
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar

½ teaspoon sea salt
6 large handfuls baby spinach (about 180 grams)
18 small green beans, blanched
150 grams soft feta, crumbled roughly
⅔ cup loosely packed coriander or mint leaves
¼ cup roughly chopped roasted pistachios
½ cup unsweetened natural yoghurt
extra virgin olive oil
1 small garlic clove, crushed
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 tablespoons pomegranate molasses
5 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper


Preheat oven to 180°C. 

Trim and scrub the beetroot and lay in a single layer in a roasting dish. Mix the oil, honey and cumin together, season and drizzle over the beetroot. Roast for 35–40 minutes or until they are easily pierced with the tip of a sharp knife. If the baby beetroot are super fresh leave the skins on once cooked, otherwise just push them off. 

Preheat the oven to 200°C.

Lamb: Remove the lamb racks from the fridge half an hour before cooking. Lightly oil a roasting dish with one tablespoon of the olive oil. Place the dish in the oven to heat for a few minutes. 

Combine the spices, salt and sesame seeds. Brush lamb racks with remaining 3 tablespoons olive oil and sprinkle with the spice mix, ensuring they are well covered. Place lamb racks in the hot roasting dish and roast for 15–17 minutes (depending on size of racks), then remove from oven and rest, covered lightly for 15 minutes.

Dressing: Place all the ingredients in a sealed jar and shake to combine.

Salad: Slice the onion thinly and combine with the vinegar and salt. Leave for 10 minutes then drain well. 

On a large serving platter layer the spinach leaves, beans, feta, onion, beetroot, coriander or mint. Drizzle with half the dressing and sprinkle over pistachios. 

Slice lamb racks into three and two cutlet pieces and serve with yoghurt, a drizzle of olive oil and the salad with the remaining dressing on the side.

Menu: Serve with Turkish Bread Crostini with Whipped Feta and Broad Beans to start, and Strawberry and Lemon Tart to finish.