Skip to main content

Wok-Fried Lamb with CuminKevin Van Paassen/The Globe and Mail

David Tanis, a former chef at Chez Panisse, creates beautiful cookbooks. He concentrates on simple recipes with an abundance of flavour. The recipes in his latest book, One Good Dish, are easy to make and his instructions are impeccable. For this dish, I used lamb loins, which worked perfectly.

Servings: 3 or 4

Ready Time: 25 minutes


500 g (1 lb) boneless lean lamb cut into strips 1/4inch (5-mm) wide and 11/2 inches (4-cm) long

Salt and pepper to taste

1 tbsp cornstarch

2 tbsp vegetable oil

1 tsp cumin seeds

12 small dried red chili peppers (add more or less depending on your heat tolerance)

2-inch (5 cm) piece of ginger, peeled and cut into fine julienne

3 garlic cloves, minced

1/2 tsp toasted sesame oil

1/2 cup roughly chopped cilantro

6 scallions, thinly sliced


Place lamb in a small bowl, season with salt and pepper, and sprinkle with the cornstarch. Mix with your fingers to combine.

Heat vegetable oil in a wok or wide, cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat. When oil is hot, add the cumin seeds and dried peppers. When they begin to sizzle, add the lamb, ginger and garlic, toss well to coat. Stir-fry for 1 to 2 minutes, until the lamb is slightly browned, but still a little pink. Add the sesame oil, cilantro and scallions, and transfer to a serving dish.