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Nero Spiced Coastal Spring Lamb Rump

Spiced Coastal Spring Lamb Rump with Mediterranean Vegetables

By Scott Kennedy, Nero Restaurant,
Palmerston North

 

LAMB - SERVES 2

2 Quality Mark Coastal Spring Lamb Rumps
2 Tbsp Harissa Tapenade
(Village Press) Zest of 1 lemon

 

CAPONATA MEDITERRANEAN VEGETABLES

1 medium sized eggplant
2 courgettes, diced into 1.5cm cubes
Olive oil
1 red onion, diced
1 Tbsp garlic, chopped 1 tsp thyme, chopped
1 tsp rosemary, chopped 10 caponata black olives, sliced
2 anchovy fillets, chopped
2 Tbsp brown sugar
2 Tbsp sherry vinegar
1 Tbsp capers, chopped
1 Tbsp sultanas
1 Tbsp pomegranate molasses 1 Tbsp Italian parsley, chopped Salt and pepper

 

POLENTA HERB HASH

500ml vegetable stock
½ tsp salt
2 cups polenta
1 Tbsp butter
1 Tbsp parsley, chopped 1 Tbsp thyme, chopped
½ garlic clove, crushed ½ cup grated parmesan cheese

 

FOR SERVING

Baby peas
Jus - a store bought jus or pre-made by reducing lamb stock.

 

LAMB RUMP

Combine the lemon zest with the Harissa Tapenade. Marinate the lamb rumps in the lemon tapenade mixture ensuring the rumps are fully coated. Cover and set aside for 2-3 hours in the refrigerator.

 

POLENTA HERB CAKES

Bring stock to the boil. Add salt and garlic and sprinkle in the polenta, stirring to avoid lumps.

Reduce the heat and simmer until thick and leaves the sides of the pan.  Mix in butter, herbs and parmesan. Spread a 2cm thick rectangle of the mixture into
a clean cake tin, lined in cling film.  Make sure the mixture is evenly spread and has a smooth top.  Cool and leave to set in the fridge. Cut into rectangles and then into triangles and fry in olive oil on both sides until crisp and golden.

 

CAPONATA MEDITERRANEAN VEGETABLES

Cut the eggplant into quarters and remove some of the core on each quarter leaving 2.5cm of flesh. Dice into 1.5cm cubes and pan fry in olive oil, ensuring you get a nice golden colour on the eggplant.  Once just cooked through (about 5-6 minutes), lay in a colander to drain.

Meanwhile, place the courgettes and red onion in a pan with 2 Tbsp olive oil and sweat them until onions are translucent and courgettes have a nice golden colour, but are firm to the bite.  Add garlic, thyme and rosemary and sauté off for a further 3 minutes and set aside.

In a clean bowl combine the eggplant, red onion and courgette mixture, plus the remaining ingredients and season to taste.

 

TO SERVE

Sear off the lamb rump on all sides.  Place into a hot pre-heated oven on 200°C for 12 minutes.  Remove from oven and rest for 10 minutes in a warm place before carving across the grain.  

Take a couple of tablespoons of the caponata Mediterranean vegetable mix and place down the centre of your warm plate. Place sliced lamb rump on the top and a polenta herb cake to one side.  Drizzle a little jus around the plate and garnish with hot baby peas.

 

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