Delicious symbolism: East or West, lamb stars on Easter
Easter dinner: The lamb is closely identified with Jesus, whose resurrection is celebrated on Easter. So strong is the symbolism at Easter, the lamb can appear in many other edible forms besides meat. (Bill Hogan/Chicago Tribune)
Freshly ground pepper
1 bay leaf
1/2 stick (4 tablespoons) butter, melted, or olive oil
1/2 cup water
6 potatoes, peeled, cut into quarters
2 heaping tablespoons tomato paste, diluted in 1/2 cup warm water
1 tablespoon oregano
1. Heat oven to 375 degrees. Open a few gashes in the meat with a sharp knife; push the slivered garlic deep inside them. Do the same with the rosemary. Place the meat in a large baking pan. Rub meat with lemon halves; season with salt and pepper to taste. Place the bay leaf next to the lamb. Baste meat with some of the melted butter. Pour 1/2 cup water around the meat.
2. Bake, 1 hour. Add the potatoes all around the meat; pour the tomato paste mixture over the potatoes. Sprinkle with remaining butter, juice from the lemon halves and oregano. Bake, until internal temperature reaches desired doneness, 145 degrees for medium-rare, 1 hour. Allow to rest 15 minutes before carving.
Per serving: 480 calories, 25 g fat, 12 g saturated fat, 128 mg cholesterol, 27 g carbohydrates, 37 g protein, 421 mg sodium, 2 g fiber.
Herb-crusted lamb chops with red wine reduction
Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 20 minutes
Note: This recipe from "Savoring the Faith," the Rev. Leo Patalinghug's new cooking series, calls for frenched lamb chops, which are trimmed so the long rib bone is largely free of meat or fat. Many markets sell the chops already frenched or ask the butcher to do it for you.
1 rack of lamb, frenched (6 to 8 chops)
1 tablespoon olive oil