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Miles of rich blue Mediterranean coastline and delicious food and wine await!
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3 boned racks or loins of lamb, fat removedSalt and freshly ground black pepper1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley1/4 cup chopped fresh chives2 tablespoon chopped fresh mint1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme1 teaspoon chopped fresh oregano1 tablespoon lavender flowers, fresh or dried4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil1 tablespoon unsalted butter30 medium cloves garlic, peeled6 cups homemade chicken stock or veal stock1 pound lamb stew meat, fat removed, cut into 1/2-inch cubesParsley, mint, rosemary, thyme or oregano sprigs as a garnishFresh lavender sprigs as a garnish
To butterfly the lamb loin, make a 1/2-inch deep cut along the long side of the lamb rack or loin. Continue to cut deeper and deeper into the rack or loin in a circular pattern creating a flat piece of meat. Season with salt and pepper. Pound the meat slightly to flatten evenly.
In a bowl, combine the parsley, chives, mint, rosemary, thyme, oregano, lavender, salt, pepper and 1 tablespoon of the olive oil. Mix well. Spread the mixture evenly over the flattened racks or loins of lamb. Roll the lamb back up to its original shape enclosing the herbs and tie with cotton kitchen string at 1-inch intervals. Reserve the lamb in the refrigerator.
Note: This can be done one day in advance and stored in the refrigerator. Bring to room temperature before cooking.
Heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil in a frying pan over medium heat and cook the garlic, stirring occasionally, until light golden, 15 minutes. Add 2 cups of the chicken stock and simmer over low heat until the garlic is soft, 15 to 20 minutes. With a slotted spoon, remove the garlic from the stock and reserve the garlic stock and garlic cloves separately.
Heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil in a large frying pan over medium heat. Add the lamb cubes and cook, turning occasionally, until golden brown on all sides, 20 to 30 minutes, being careful not to burn. Add the reserved garlic stock and simmer slowly over medium low heat until the liquid has reduced by half, 10 minutes. Add 3 cups chicken stock and reduce slowly until half remains, 15 to 20 minutes. Add the remaining 3 cups chicken stock and reduce by one-quarter until the sauce coats the back of a spoon lightly, 10 to 15 minutes. Strain the sauce back in a saucepan and discard the lamb pieces. Add the garlic cloves and season with salt and pepper and set aside.
Bring the lamb loins to room temperature. Preheat an oven to 425°F.
Heat 1 tablespoon of the remaining olive oil in an oven-proof frying pan over high heat. Brown the lamb loins turning occasionally until golden on all sides, 6 to 8 minutes total. Transfer the pan to the oven and cook until medium rare and the internal temperature is 140°F, 8 to 10 minutes. Let rest 5 to 10 minutes before slicing.
To serve, slice each lamb loin into 6 pieces, 1-inch thick, removing the strings as you go. Place 3 pieces of lamb on each plate and distribute the sauce and garlic cloves around the lamb. Garnish with sprigs of herbs and lavender.
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