Life

James Street Cookery School: Celebrate Easter with rack of lamb and chocolate tart

Why not try Niall's rack of lamb this weekend?
Niall McKenna

THIS week’s recipes are perfect for celebrating Easter: first up, a rack of lamb, my take on an Easter tradition, followed by a scrumptious chocolate tart.

I made the lamb dish last week and used the leftovers with a bit of cous cous for Monday’s dinner. While I'm definitely not an advocate of making too much food, when you are going to the trouble of cooking a celebratory meal there is always the chance of some leftovers, so it makes sense to use your leftovers for an easy dinner.

This weekend, therefore, make sure you have some cous cous in the cupboard. Make the most of the Easter holiday with your family and ensure to enjoy some delicious food.

RACK OF LAMB

(Serves 4)

2 x 8 cutlet lamb racks, bones cleaned and trimmed

2 tablesp olive oil

2 sprigs rosemary

1 lemon sliced

2 cloves garlic, crushed

sea salt

black pepper

1kg baby potatoes sliced thinly

Preheat the oven to 220C. Thinly slice the potatoes and place at the bottom of the roasting tray. Brush the lamb with the olive oil and rub over with the garlic. Place the garlic, lemon and rosemary in the roasting tin.

Drizzle with more olive oil; season with black pepper and sea salt. Place in oven for 20-25 minutes for medium rare, another five minutes for medium. Remove from oven, cover with tinfoil and leave to rest for a couple of minutes. Slice and serve, with the potatoes and fresh watercress.

CHOCOLATE TART

(Serves 6-8)

For the sweet pastry:

500g plain flour

50g coco powder

250g unsalted butter

125g icing sugar

2 egg yolks, beaten

1 whole egg

Cold water

For the chocolate tart filling:

375g 75 per cent Dark Chocolate

3 whole eggs

2 egg yolks

200 ml double cream

175ml milk

Place the flour, butter and sugar into a large clean bowl. Rub the butter into the flour with your fingertips. Add in the coco powder and mix with fingertips until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs, working as quickly as possible to prevent the dough becoming warm.

Add the eggs to the mixture and, using a cold knife, stir until the dough binds together.

Add some cold water a teaspoon at a time if the mixture is too dry. Wrap the dough in cling film and chill for a minimum of 15, maximum 30 minutes.

Roll out and place in a greased tin. Line with greaseproof paper and baking beans and cook for 15 minutes at 170C. Remove from the oven and brush with egg yolk before placing back into the oven for four minutes. Remove, leave to the side to cool and then make up the chocolate mix.

To make the filling, melt the chocolate in a bowl placed over a pot of boiling water, making sure no water gets into the bowl. In a separate pan, bring the milk and cream to the boil. Whisk in the eggs. Pass through a sieve. Pour this mix on to the melted chocolate and whisk.

Pour the chocolate mixture into the baked tart case, place in a preheated oven (160C) and cook for 10 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool. Place in the fridge untilready to serve; then serve with whipped cream.

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