Lamb on the bone is a favourite in Middle Eastern cuisine, so taking that spicing and slathering it on shoulder chops is a winning recipe. I tested different cooking lengths. The one-hour timing – slightly pink with a more gentle flavour – was my favourite. (I found two hours was a little drier and three was tender and full-flavoured, falling off the bone.)
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Lamb shoulder chops (Middle Eastern style)
4 lamb shoulder chops, about 6 oz each
1/4 cup pomegranate molasses, or reduce 1 1/2 cups pomegranate juice to 1/4 cup
1 tbsp ground ginger
1 tbsp ground coriander
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tbsp ground black pepper
1 tsp ground star anise
1 tsp ground cardamom
Mix molasses and spices in a bowl. Brush marinade on shoulder chops and leave to marinate for 1 hour.
Preheat grill to 275 F. You may have to turn off two burners to achieve this low heat. Oil grill and add chops. Close lid and let cook for 1 hour for medium rare or 3 hours for a slow-cooked chop, turning once.
Remove from heat and serve with creamy green salsa and vegetable chips.
Suggested Wine Pairings
Shiraz could work delectably with this lamb, but I’d veer toward a Rhône Valley red instead, and many reds from that southern French valley are based largely on Syrah, the French (and more established) name for Shiraz. Rhône reds tend to pack a firmer feel and more herbal-peppery punch, qualities that will resonate with the aromatic marinade. – Beppi Crosariol