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“Jack ‘n Five” Rack of Lamb

A new twist for lamb enthusiasts. I’d rate this recipe higher in terms of overall taste if I’d had a better cut of meat. Goes to show you that without a good cut of meat, you’re a bit out of luck. Last night I grilled up a new recipe that I like to call “Jack n’ Five.” It’s a combination of East meets West with a Jack Daniels inspired marinade followed by a Chinese 5 Spice butter sauce. The combination was brilliant!

So here’s what you’ll need to do. Preparation time is about a half day but you can leave the lamb to marinate over night however the JD is so strong that you really don’t need that much time to infuse the flavour. To prepare your lamb marinade, combine the following in a non-reactive bowl:

  1. 1/2 cup of finely chopped fresh cilantro

  2. 1/4 cup quality honey

  3. 2 tbsp Jack Daniels Tennessee Whiskey (old no 7)

  4. 2 tbsp light soy sauce

  5. 4 cloves of garlic, finely minced

Whisk this all together, place your lamb rack in a zip-top bag and then pour the marinade all over the lamb. Give the bag a careful few squishes ensuring you evenly coast the rack. Place it in a shallow plate or bowl just in case you’ve punctured the bag. Leave it in the fridge for up to 12 hours.

When you’re ready to get this rack on the  grid, set up your grill for indirect heat. I chose direct this time round but then realised that with the honey in the marinade, it charred a bit too quickly for my liking. My lamb rack had a very flappy fat cap so I decided to truss the rack with butchers twine. It helped keep it all together during the grilling. As you proceed with the grilling, set up the internal temperature for about 400F (205C) and shoot for an internal rack temperature of 115F (46C) – you’ll not be done at that point, just ready to take it off, cut the rack into even lamb chops then grill them on a direct flame for about 30 seconds per side. Make sure you’ve flipped your rack a few times as it’s grilling, especially if you are cooking over direct flame like I did.

Just before you grill though you’ll want to prepare the Five-spice butter sauce. For that simply combine:

  1. 1 cup of chicken stock

  2. 5 tbsp oyster sauce

  3. the juice of one fresh lemon

  4. 1 tbsp caster sugar

  5. 1 tsp five-spice powder

  6. 2 green onions (thinly chopped)

  7. 1/2 cup of butter (at room temperature)

Bring this all to a boil and reduce down to 3/4 cup – that should take about 12 minutes on full boil. Reduce to low heat then add the butter and green onions. Whisk it gently and melt the butter which will thicken your sauce.

Once you’re lamb is done, plate up and add a heaping tablespoon or two of this sauce. The flavour will surely please the palate! There’s a wonderful sweetness followed by a bit of sour then a shot of Jack!  A really tasty meal and one I’d recommend you try!

We served the lamb with traditional Asian greens and steamed white rice. You can get creative with your sides but rest assured, the lamb is the centrepiece of this dinner.


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