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Recipe Friday: It's Grilling Season!

Nothing says summer quite like a barbecue. In fact, not only is July National Grilling Month, but July 4th also happens to be National Barbecue Spareribs Day.  So this weekend as you gather with friends and family to celebrate America's birthday, why not add an upscale twist by brining lamb into the mix. 

Grilling remains one of the most popular preparation methods for lamb. Lamb rib chops, loin chops, kabobs and boneless lamb legs are perfect for the grill. Here are two recipes from the American Lamb Board to add to your summer menus. 



Grilled Butterflied Leg of Lamb with Rosemary Sea Salt and Charred Lemons

4 to 6 servings


½ cup coarse sea salt
¼ cup fresh rosemary leaves
2 ½ to 3 lbs boneless leg of American Lamb, trimmed and butterflied
Extra-virgin olive oil
2 ea. lemons


  1. In a food processor, grind salt and rosemary together until the mixture is the texture of coarse sand.  The rosemary salt can be used immediately or dried for later use.  To dry, spread the salt mixture on a large plate and leave it out at room temperature, uncovered, until fully dried, about 1 day.  Store in a sealed container; it will keep for several months. 
  2. Season the lamb generously with rosemary salt (about 2 tablespoons), working it into all the crevasses.  Set the lamb aside at room temperature for at least 30 minutes before grilling, or cover and refrigerate for up to 2 days.
  3. Pat lamb dry if needed; rub lightly with olive oil to coat.
  4. Grease the grill grates with oil, and place the lamb on the hottest part of the grill.  Cook with the grill covered, turning once, until brown and crusty all over.  Move lamb to a cooler part of the grill; continue cooking to 130°F for medium-rare, 15 to 25 minutes total. (Carry-over cooking will increase the internal temperature off the grill.)  Transfer lamb to a platter, cover with foil, and let rest at least 10 minutes before cutting it into thick slices against the grain.
  5. Meanwhile, halve the lemons; brush the cut sides lightly with oil.  Place them cut-side down on the grill until deeply charred, 2 to 3 minutes.
  6. Arrange the lamb slices on a large platter or directly over the salad.  Serve with the charred lemon halves for squeezing, and more of the rosemary salt.

American Lamb Ribs with Tangy St. Louis Sauce

Yield: 12 servings


6 rib racks, American Lamb ribs, well trimmed 

Ingredients for Dry Rub

3 T dark brown sugar 
1 tsp chili powder  
2 tsp salt
2 tsp pepper
1 tsp cayenne pepper       
1 tsp paprika   

Ingredients for Tangy St. Louis Sauce

1/3 cup beer or beef stock  
¼ cup dark brown sugar, packed
3 T worcestershire sauce 
3 T tomato paste  
2 tsp cayenne pepper
2 tsp chili powder


  1. For dry rub: In bowl, combine brown sugar, chili powder, salt, pepper, cayenne pepper and paprika; set aside.
  2. For Tangy St. Louis Sauce:  In bowl, combine beer or beef stock, brown sugar, Worcestershire sauce, tomato paste, cayenne pepper and chili powder; set aside.
  3. Place whole ribs on 2 greased sheet pans.  Season each with 1 tablespoon dry rub mix, rubbing into meat.  Roast at 350ºF for 1 to 1-1/2 hours until seasoning is dark in color and fat is rendered from meat.  Remove pans from oven.  Take ribs off the pans and pour off fat.
  4. Return ribs to pans, baste with sauce and continue basting every 15 minutes.  Roast at 350ºF for additional 1 hour until ribs are caramelized.
  5. To Serve:  Slice between the ribs and serve.


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