With Black Olives, Roasted Garlic and Red Wine Sauce
If you like lamb, but have never sampled a leg-of-lamb steak, you are in for a real treat. Offering more tenderness than a shoulder-type lamb chop, this uber-flavorful cut is best for the grill. The cut also allows you to enjoy deeper-flavored accompaniments without covering up the taste. Roasted garlic, olives, capers and fennel enhance a red wine lamb or beef broth, which get minimally thickened with a little butter at the end, for a lighter, brighter sauce.
- 12 New Potatoes, white or gold
- 1/4 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 18 Garlic Cloves
- 1 Shallot, minced
- 1 Tbsp. Capers, rinsed
- 1/3 cup Kalamata Olives, pitted
- 1/4 cup Fennel/Anise Bulbs, thinly shaved, plus fennel tops for garnish
- 1 cup Red Wine (light, such as Pinot Noir)
- 1 quart Lamb or Beef Broth (or stock)
- 1/4 cup Parsley, fresh, minced
- 4 Tbsp. Butter, salted
- 6 Leg-of-Lamb Steaks
- As needed: Extra Virgin Olive Oil, enough to lightly coat meat
- To Taste: Kosher or Sea Salt
- To Taste: Black Pepper, freshly ground
- Blanch the potatoes in simmering, salted water until just tender. Drain, cool and halve them. Set aside.
- Slowly pan fry the garlic cloves in the extra virgin olive oil until soft and golden. Drain the oil, reserving it for the potatoes.
- Prepare a hot grill.
- As the grill heats, in a large sauté pan, use 2 Tbsp. of the oil reserved from the garlic to sauté the shallots over medium heat until tender, translucent and beginning to brown. Add the garlic cloves, capers, olives and shaved fennel, and sauté briefly until warmed through. Add the red wine and bring to a boil. Cook until the wine is reduced by half. Add the broth, bringing it to a boil and reducing it down to about 2 cups. Remove the pan from the heat and set aside, keeping warm.
- In another large, preferably non-stick sauté pan, heat the remaining reserved garlic oil over medium heat and fry the pre-blanched potatoes until golden and crisp.
- Once the sauce and potatoes are underway, season the leg-of-lamb steaks with salt, pepper and olive oil. Grill 4 minutes per side, rotating 90 degrees halfway through the time on each side, in order to produce the classic cross-hash design, which equates to more grilled flavor. Medium is a good doneness for leg-of-lamb steak. Remove the meat to a platter and allow it to rest for a few minutes.
- To serve, place steaks onto warm serving plates. Pour any juices from the resting meat into the sauce and bring to a boil. Swirl in the butter and parsley and season to taste with salt and pepper, if needed. Spoon the sauce over the lamb steaks and garnish the plates with the crispy fried potatoes and fennel tops.