Grape leaf rack of lamb with spiced risotto and yogurt

By Shahir Massoud
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  • 2 680 gram rack of lamb
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely minced
  • 3 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 1 cup rice, short grain (like an Arborio)
  • 1 tablespoon cumin, toasted then ground
  • 1 tablespoon coriander, toasted then ground
  • 1 tablespoon fennel, toasted then ground
  • 1 tablespoon caraway, toasted then ground
  • 6 cup beef stock
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • Salt to taste
  • 16 grape leaves
  • 1 cup yogurt
  • 1/2 cucumber
  • 1 clove garlic
  • Salt to taste


  1. Coat the lamb evenly with the spices and season with salt and pepper. Sear on all sides, then roast for 14 minutes/per pound. Allow to rest at least 15 minutes before carving.
  2. Cook the rice exactly like a risotto. Slowly start by softening the onion and garlic in the three tablespoons of olive oil and a pinch of salt for about ten minutes on low heat. Then add the rice and toast for one minute, adding an additional one tablespoon olive oil if necessary, adding the spices to toast as well. Gradually add stock and remaining salt for the next 17 – 20 minutes, stirring regularly until cooked through. Season with additional salt to taste. Finish with one tablespoon butter.
  3. Dehydrate the grape leaves in the lowest setting of your oven, around 225 degrees for 1 to 1.5 hours until hardened. Place the dried grape leaves in the spice grinder and turn into a powder. Set aside, good for up to a week.
  4. To serve: Place some risotto on the bottom of the plate. Top with carved lamb, sprinkling of the grape leaf powder and a dollop of the yougurt. Enjoy! 

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