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Hack cooking grassfed lamb

Answered on September 16, 2014
Created February 03, 2013 at 11:25 PM

I've been looking for a while for a local farm that had truly "pastured" chickens, and my husband laughed at me because he pictured chickens all over the hillside grazing on bugs while watched over by "chicken dogs" and tiny little cowboys on miniature horses.

Well, guess what? He found exactly that type of chicken farm (minus the tiny little cowboys on miniature horses, but there are 3 chicken herding dogs!). He was so excited. The farm also has lambs, pigs, goats and a few cows. So he brough home (in addition to pastured eggs and some offal) a few grass fed lamb chops.

They were very lean, hardly any fat at all and no marbling in the meat. He tried to cook them gently, but they were tough and didn't have great flavor. I was so disappointed (especially considering the price).

Any tips on how to cook the grassfed lamb so that it's not dried out and tough?

Ed7403e397077dd1acdbf25c7f6e56ce

(3452)

on February 04, 2013
at 12:28 PM

By the way, I worked for almost 20 years as a chef. 12 of which I was kitchen manager of a high volume steak & chop house.

Ed7403e397077dd1acdbf25c7f6e56ce

(3452)

on February 04, 2013
at 10:52 AM

If you were talking loin or rib chops it'd be a completely different story. Shoulder chops need to be broken down.

Ed7403e397077dd1acdbf25c7f6e56ce

(3452)

on February 04, 2013
at 10:47 AM

The reason it's tough is because it's a cheap cut loaded with sinew. Trust me. Cook it how I said and it'll be great.

3491e51730101b18724dc57c86601173

(8395)

on February 04, 2013
at 08:18 AM

That sounds likely. They were previously frozen but thawed.

3491e51730101b18724dc57c86601173

(8395)

on February 04, 2013
at 08:17 AM

40 minutes at 450???? That seems awfully hot and awfully long for something 1" thick,

Ed7403e397077dd1acdbf25c7f6e56ce

(3452)

on February 04, 2013
at 02:16 AM

Or just take the meat out and cook your veggies in the skillet drippings, add some stewed tomatoes and re-add the meat to simmer.

Ed7403e397077dd1acdbf25c7f6e56ce

(3452)

on February 04, 2013
at 02:13 AM

After taking them out of the oven you can add coconut milk & spices and simmer until thick. You can't really overcook shoulder chops.

Ed7403e397077dd1acdbf25c7f6e56ce

(3452)

on February 04, 2013
at 02:10 AM

Okay, for shoulder chops: season your meat... pre-heat oven to 425... heat your cast iron skillet and add your fat. When drops of water pop in the fat add the chops. Flip chops when they release without effort and put the pan in the oven. Let them cook about 40 minutes.

3491e51730101b18724dc57c86601173

(8395)

on February 04, 2013
at 02:05 AM

Roundbone shoulder chops are my favorite so I can suck the marrow out of the bones ;o)

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3 Answers

1
23f701386ac9e4ccc6767b627c5e3abf

on February 04, 2013
at 02:05 AM

The reason your grass fed lamb was tough and low on flavor was probably because your husband over cooked it. Due to its low fat content, grass fed meat should always be cooked at a lower temperature (usually 50 degree less than normal meat) and for at least 30% lesser than the cooking time of normal meat. I hope the meat was not frozen and if it was, it should have been thawed well before cooking.

Ed7403e397077dd1acdbf25c7f6e56ce

(3452)

on February 04, 2013
at 10:47 AM

The reason it's tough is because it's a cheap cut loaded with sinew. Trust me. Cook it how I said and it'll be great.

3491e51730101b18724dc57c86601173

(8395)

on February 04, 2013
at 08:18 AM

That sounds likely. They were previously frozen but thawed.

1
Ed7403e397077dd1acdbf25c7f6e56ce

on February 03, 2013
at 11:50 PM

Slow & low or broil/sautee to medium.

Wait... what kind of chops?

Ed7403e397077dd1acdbf25c7f6e56ce

(3452)

on February 04, 2013
at 02:10 AM

Okay, for shoulder chops: season your meat... pre-heat oven to 425... heat your cast iron skillet and add your fat. When drops of water pop in the fat add the chops. Flip chops when they release without effort and put the pan in the oven. Let them cook about 40 minutes.

Ed7403e397077dd1acdbf25c7f6e56ce

(3452)

on February 04, 2013
at 10:52 AM

If you were talking loin or rib chops it'd be a completely different story. Shoulder chops need to be broken down.

3491e51730101b18724dc57c86601173

(8395)

on February 04, 2013
at 02:05 AM

Roundbone shoulder chops are my favorite so I can suck the marrow out of the bones ;o)

3491e51730101b18724dc57c86601173

(8395)

on February 04, 2013
at 08:17 AM

40 minutes at 450???? That seems awfully hot and awfully long for something 1" thick,

Ed7403e397077dd1acdbf25c7f6e56ce

(3452)

on February 04, 2013
at 02:13 AM

After taking them out of the oven you can add coconut milk & spices and simmer until thick. You can't really overcook shoulder chops.

Ed7403e397077dd1acdbf25c7f6e56ce

(3452)

on February 04, 2013
at 12:28 PM

By the way, I worked for almost 20 years as a chef. 12 of which I was kitchen manager of a high volume steak & chop house.

Ed7403e397077dd1acdbf25c7f6e56ce

(3452)

on February 04, 2013
at 02:16 AM

Or just take the meat out and cook your veggies in the skillet drippings, add some stewed tomatoes and re-add the meat to simmer.

0
Medium avatar

(167)

on September 16, 2014
at 08:13 PM

Slow cooker! I've never had any tough meat come out of my slow cooker. If you rub it down with some rosemary and other herbs, it will taste great.

Another trick I learned from a friend is that if your meat is too lean, give it a fatty kick with some lard or butter. You could ask the farmer if he'd give you some of the trimmed fat off that pasteured lamb so you could render it and add it back to the meat as it cooks.

I'll be getting a grass-fed goat in a bit here, and I'm looking forward to some good slow-cooked meat.

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