The Blasphemist's Christmas

See Also
The Feasts: Holiday Banquets to the Nth Degree
  Rack of Lamb With Candy-Cane Crust

The Chef
Wylie Dufresne of WD-50

8 people

3/4 cup salt
3 whole racks of lamb
4 ounces butter, clarified, or olive oil
2 6-inch candy canes
2 teaspoons chopped parsley
1 ½ cups fresh sourdough bread crumbs
½ cup molasses

Cooking Instructions
In a large bowl, dissolve the salt in 5 quarts of water and place the racks of lamb in the solution for 3 hours. Remove the racks, pat dry, and set on a platter to air-dry for 2 to 3 hours.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Heat 2 medium sauté pans over medium-high heat and add 2 tablespoons butter to each pan. Place the lamb fat-side down in the pans and sear for 2 minutes. Set the lamb in a large roasting pan and roast, turning the racks every 3 to 4 minutes, until the internal temperature reaches 130 (15 to 20 minutes). Cover with foil and let rest for 10 minutes.

Place the candy canes inside a Ziploc bag, seal, and crush finely with a rolling pin. Sift through a sieve. Add the candy-cane powder and chopped parsley to the bread crumbs and fold together. Brush the roast with molasses and sprinkle liberally with the crust mixture. Carve and serve.

Best With
Suggested Menu: eggnog ice cream with caviar and pumpernickel croutons; rack of lamb with candy-cane crust; smoked mashed potatoes; lentils in cider with nori, mincemeat gravy; goat-cheese panna cotta with bacon syrup and cashews

Suggested Wine Pairing: 2003 Kongsgaard Chardonnay, Napa Valley.

Photograph by Reinhard Hunger