Lamb is locally produced in Southern Idaho, yet it is not frequently served in our area restaurants. Here is an easy, yet impressive, recipe for Balsamic Pan Seared Lamb Chops. In case lamb isn’t to your liking, I have also included a fantastic Balsamic Chicken recipe that is sure to charm your dinner guests. We served ours with wild rice pilaf, as well as zucchini, yellow squash and red onions sliced thin and sautéed in olive oil. When vegetables are almost done, sprinkle with the salt and pepper herb of your choice – perhaps a little fresh rosemary.

Photo © Jason Lugo

Balsamic Pan Seared Lamb Chops

2 full racks of lamb (serves four people)
Canola oil
Olive oil
4-6  ounces of a good Balsamic vinegar
Salt and pepper to taste
Pesto sauce

Unless you like to French your own, buy pre-Frenched lamb chops, then cut each chop off the rack.
On medium high heat, lightly season your pan with 75 percent canola oil and 25 percent olive oil. Brush lamb chops with balsamic, sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place the lamb in the pan with the ribs all going in the same direction. Cook for approximately 4 minutes, then turn and cook for another 3 to 4 minutes. You want a nice sear on both sides, but don’t over cook. Lamb is best served medium rare. I serve my lamb with a mint basil pesto. Just use your favorite pesto recipe and substitute mint for half of the basil.

Photo © Jason Lugo

Balsamic Chicken

4 six-ounce chicken breasts
4-6 ounces of a good balsamic vinegar
Salt and pepper to taste

Preheat grill and brush chicken with balsamic. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place chicken presentation side down (the side you want showing when it’s on the plate). After 3 or  4 minutes, give chicken a quarter turn on the grill for nice marks. Grill until chicken is cooked halfway through (about 5 minutes, depending on the heat of your grill). Brush chicken with balsamic and turn over. Repeat grill mark process and cook until chicken is done.