This recipe sounds, looks and tastes fancy, but it takes only a few steps of preparation and some simple assembly.
It’s one of those recipes that demands the best ingredients you can afford; it will make a difference. You can also use rib lamb chops, which are a bit pricier.
Play around with the herb and lettuce mixture. Any assortment of tender lettuces and fresh herbs will be lovely atop the rich grilled chops and tender, smoky onions. Grilling the lemons with the lamb and onions caramelizes them, and the juice you sprinkle over the finished dish will have a nice hint of smokiness.
You can let the onions and lemons sit in the marinade at room temperature for an hour or so, or in the fridge for up to 2 days, for more flavour.
If you have a vegetable grilling grate, use it. Otherwise, even if you use a wide grilling spatula, you might end up sacrificing a few of the onion rings to the grilling gods.
Grilled Lamb Chops and Onions with Herb Salad
Start to finish: One hour
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil, divided
1/4 cup dry white wine
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar, preferably white balsamic
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
3 large yellow or Vidalia onions
3 lemons, halved crosswise
10 loin lamb chops, about 1-inch thick
2 cups baby arugula
1 cup flat-leaf parsley leaves
Combine 1/4 cup of the olive oil with the white wine, balsamic vinegar, and salt and pepper in a shallow baking dish. Peel the onions and cut them crosswise into 1/2-inch slices. Place them in the baking dish along with the lemon halves, turn to coat with the marinade (it’s fine to stack the onion slices) and set aside.
Brush the lamb chops with 2 tablespoons of the remaining olive oil, generously season with salt and pepper, and let sit for 30 minutes at room temperature. Meanwhile, preheat the grill to medium/medium-high.
Grill the onions and the lamb chops for about 8 minutes, about 4 minutes on each side, so that they get nicely browned on both sides. Turn the onions with a grilling spatula (you can use a spatula or tongs for the lamb). At the same time, grill the lemons cut-side down for about 5 minutes. The internal temperature of the lamb chops should be 130 degree F for medium rare.
Remove the chops and lemons from the grill and let sit on a cutting board for 10 minutes. Meanwhile, move the onions to a cooler area of the grill or turn the gas down, and let them continue to soften while the lamb and lemons sit, watching carefully to make sure the onions don’t burn.
While the chops sit and the onions finish cooking, place the arugula and parsley in a medium bowl. Drizzle with the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil, season with salt and pepper, and toss.
Place the lamb chops and onions on a serving platter. Pile the arugula and herb salad on top. Place the lemon halves on the side so people can squeeze them, or squeeze the juice yourself all over the meal and serve immediately.
Nutrition information per serving: 420 calories; 171 calories from fat; 19 g fat (4 g saturated; 0 g trans fats); 146 mg cholesterol; 403 mg sodium; 11 g carbohydrate; 2 g fiber; 5 g sugar; 51 g protein.