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Grilled Rack of Lamb, Summer Salad, Basil and Charred Tomato Vinaigrette

Grilled Rack of Lamb, Summer Salad, Basil and Charred Tomato Vinaigrette

From: Chef Jim Bostsacos, Molyvos, New York, NY.

Yield: 12 servings.

1 Tbsp. almonds
3 large cloves garlic
1 small potato, boiled with skin, chopped (use warm)
1/4 tsp. coarse salt
1/4 tsp. white pepper
3 Tbsp. white vinegar
3 Tbsp. sparkling water

1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 yellow bell peppers
2 green bell peppers
2 zucchini, cut into 1/2" thick strips
2 ears corn, husk removed
2 small eggplant, sliced 1/2" thick
2 red onions, sliced 1/2" thick
1 cup arugula leaves
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil leaves
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. ground black pepper

7 plum tomatoes
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/3 cup red wine vinegar
1 1/2 Tbsp. sherry vinegar
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 tsp. granulated sugar
1 1/2 tsp. ground cumin
3/4 tsp. salt
3/4 tsp. ground black pepper

3 American Lamb racks, frenched
3 Tbsp. olive oil to taste, salt and pepper
3 cups arugula leaves

For skordalia: In food processor, grind almonds until very fine. Add garlic, potato, salt and pepper; process until smooth. Add vinegar and sparkling water and process until consistency of creamy mashed potatoes. Can be prepared a day ahead. Bring to room temperature the day of use.

For vegetable stock: Brush vegetables with oil. Grill peppers, zucchini, corn, eggplant and onion. Turn, grilling both sides. Peel and seed peppers; cut into 1" pieces. Cut other vegetables into 2" pieces. Cut corn off cob. Place all grilled vegetables and arugula in bowl. Combine vinegar, 1/4 cup oil, basil, salt and pepper. Pour over vegetables and gently toss.

For charred tomato vinagrette: Toss tomatoes with 1 Tbsp. oil. Grill tomatoes. Cool, peel, remove seeds and finely chop; drain. In medium bowl, combine tomatoes, vinegars, garlic, sugar, cumin, salt and pepper. Whisk in oil until well-blended.

For rack of lamb salad: Brush racks with oil, season with salt and pepper. Grill racks meat-side down about 6 minutes per side. Turn and grill to desired degree of doneness. Use meat thermometer to test lamb, 145°F for medium-rare, 160°F for medium, or 170°F for well done. Cover and let stand 10 minutes. Cut each rack between bones into chops.

To assemble: In the center of 12 plates, place a portion of vegetable salad. Place 1 chop on top so that bone is facing 2 o'-clock. Put a heaping spoonful of skordalia on chop and lean a second chop against it, so that the first chop is facing 5 o'clock. Generously drizzle plate with tomato vinaigrette and top with arugula leaves.

Photo Credit: American Lamb Board