Morgan Valley Lamb Sirloin
When considering all that Utah has to offer, people typically think about the outdoors. Sure, we have the greatest snow on earth, amazing rock climbing, challenging bike trails, inspiring hiking trails and beautiful national parks, but what they might not know is that we also have some of the best lamb. Lamb? Yeah, that's right, lamb.
If you think about it, it makes perfect sense. We have some of the most beautiful and prestine landscapes imaginable, and that translates into the perfect place to raise quality lamb. Fortunately, Linda and Jamie Gillmor realized that fact, and have been selling their naturally raised Morgan Valley Lamb since 2001. It can be found in some of Utah's best restaurants and specialty stores, but we are fortunate enough to live a only a quick bicycle ride away from Emigration Market which sells Morgan Valley Lamb.
After recently reading Vanessa Chang's insightful article on Morgan Valley Lamb in Salt Lake Magazine, I was itching to get my hands on some fresh lamb. So, after a day of grueling spring yard work, K and I peddled up to Emigration Market and picked up a lamb sirlion.
Since it was a sunny spring day I figured that the most appropriate way to prepare the lamb sirloin was on the grill. Being the sauce-whore that I am, I also prepared a little brandy/port reduction sauce, but I can tell you that the lamb is so tasty by itself that a sauce is not necessary. Believe me, the lamb sirloin is so succulent and flavorful that all it needs is a big glass of red wine!
Ingredients (serves two, of course):
1 lb. Morgan Valley Super Trim Lamb Sirloin
1 Tbsp chopped rosemary (leaves only)
1 tsp chopped thyme (leaves only)
1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
Freshly ground pepper
1/4 cup Brandy
1/4 cup Port
1/2 cup veal stock (chicken or beef will work fine)
1 shallot diced
1 tsp chopped thyme (leaves only)
2 Tbsp unsalted butter
8 fingerling potatoes (any small red or white variety)
2 finely chopped garlic cloves
1 tsp chopped rosemary (leaves only)
8 grape tomatoes halved
3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
dash of Kosher salt & freshly ground pepper
To make the potatoes:
Half or quarter the potatoes so that all pieces are approximately the same size. Mix the potatoes with garlic, rosemary, olive oil, salt and pepper in a small mixing bowl. Spread potatoes evenly in aluminum foil with ends folded up to keep oil and potatoes contained. Cook in oven at 400 degrees for about 15-20 minutes or until a fork can be effortlessly inserted into a potato. Just before done add tomatoes and cook for another 3-5 minutes (stir into potatoes).
To make the Brandy Port Sauce:
Heat the butter in a sauce pan over medium heat and add shallots. Cook shallots for about 5 minutes or until tender and aromatic. Add Brandy and Port and cook until reduced by 3/4 (about 5 minutes). Add stock and simmer until reduced about 3/4. Set aside and keep warm until lamb is ready. If sauce reduces too much add water to bring back to proper consistency (do not use stock or wine to adjust consistency, as it is the water that has evaporated). Strain sauce before spooning over lamb.
To make the Lamb:
Drizzle olive oil over each side of lamb sirloin and sprinkle with salt pepper and rosemary leaves. Cover with plastic wrap and let rest for about one hour. Heat grill to medium-high. Cook for about 15-20 minutes, or until internal temperature reaches 145 degrees for medium rare. Let meat rest for about five minutes before carving. Slice meat against the grain about 1/4 - 1/2 inches thick.
Assemble lamb and potatoes on a plate and spoon warm sauce over meat. Serve with a favorite salad (we used arugula with lemon, olive oil and shaved parmesan) and spicy full-bodied red wine. Bon Appetite.