I overheard my daughter talking to her friends back home in Washington state and when she was asked what it was like living in the Willamette Valley she replied, “well, there are sheep, sheep, farms, cows and more sheep.”
Her description made me laugh because only my teenager could describe this diverse and lush valley by the animals that dot the landscape.
Most of our little towns are filled to the brim with farmer’s markets, a brewhouse or local pub on every street corner, James Beard award winning chef’s (yes, even here in the valley), vineyards, wineries and the most emerald green rolling hills mixed with the occasional forest.
We’re flanked by the Pacific Cascade range to the west and the Cascades Mountains to the east.
I adore my drive to the market because inevitably, I’ll see pastures filled with sheep and lamb, and at least one very stern faced lama working as the guard dog.
Northwest pasture raised lamb has been gaining popularity recently and it’s one of the most abundant meats found in my local markets and co-ops. Raised on the lush green pastures in the valley, without grains and free of antibiotics, no growth hormones, additives or preservatives, the lamb from the valley is typically lower in fat and an excellent source of iron and vitamin B-12. I’m a huge fan of most of our local lamb producers like Anderson Ranch, SuDan Farm and Cattail Creek Farms; raising lamb sustainably and responsibly.
This gorgeous Rosemary Garlic Crusted Lamb chop recipe was originally created for one of my favorite clients, Home By Design Magazine’s spring issue.
Of course, I chose the most delicious cut of lamb for this recipe, the lamb chop. Lamb chops are typically well marbled with fat and when they are pan seared, they remain juicy and flavorful. All you need are fresh herbs, garlic, salt, pepper and olive oil and these chops can be done in 15 minutes or less. I adore these Rosemary Garlic Crusted Lamb Chops paired with a balsamic reduction and often in the spring, I’ll serve them with a minted pea pesto that is plate licking good. I’ll post that recipe soon!
Delicious Wishes and Loads of Love,
- 8 single rib lamb chops (2 per person)
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh rosemary leaves
- 1 -2 cloves garlic finely chopped
- Salt and pepper
- 2-4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (more if needed)
- 1 cup good quality aged balsamic vinegar
- 1 teaspoon honey
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley for garnish