A Flawless Recipe for Juicy Rack of Lamb

Attention all food lovers! Today, I have a delicious and special recipe for you: rack of lamb with fig-and-port-wine sauce. This dish is perfect for a fancy dinner or a special occasion with friends and family. If you are looking for something that will impress your guests and make them feel loved and pampered, this is the recipe for you!

I learned about this recipe from Alison Attenborough, a famous chef from the Blue Line in Chicago. She has created an amazing blend of flavors that will make your taste buds dance with joy. This dish combines the juicy and tender flavor of the roasted rack of lamb with the sweetness of figs and the richness of port wine sauce.

The combination of dried figs, walnuts, parsley, and other magical ingredients will give your senses a delightful experience. Trust me – it’s worth every minute spent on its preparation.

Are you ready to impress your guests with an exquisite meal? Let’s jump into the ingredients list and learn how to make this incredible dish step by step.

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Rack of Lamb With Fig-And-Port-Wine Sauce
Rack of Lamb With Fig-And-Port-Wine Sauce

Do you want to impress your friends and family with a special occasion dish that is both decadent and delicious? Look no further than this recipe for rack of lamb with fig-and-port-wine sauce.

The combination of the tender, juicy lamb seasoned with garlic, rosemary, and thyme, and the rich, sweet sauce made with dried figs and port wine is sure to delight your taste buds.

But why settle for a good dish when you can elevate it to greatness? This recipe takes things to the next level by adding a crunchy texture to the dish with parsley and walnuts.

Plus, the recipe offers plenty of options for substitutions and variations, so you can make it your own. And don’t worry about making it too complicated; most of the ingredients are pantry staples that you probably already have on hand.

Whether you’re looking for a romantic dinner for two or a fancy dinner party centerpiece, this herb-crusted rack of lamb is sure to impress. So why settle for mediocre when you can create something truly exceptional? Give this recipe a try and taste the difference for yourself.

Ingredient List

 A feast for the eyes and the taste buds!
A feast for the eyes and the taste buds!


  • 2 racks of lamb, trimmed and frenched
  • Salt and black pepper, to taste
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 sprig fresh rosemary
  • 1/3 cup port wine
  • 1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup quartered mission figs or dried figs reconstituted in warm water for at least an hour
  • Fig Port Wine Sauce:
    • 2 cups port wine
    • 1 cup chicken stock
    • 4 garlic cloves
    • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
    • Salt and black pepper, to taste
    • 4 ounces dried figs, stemmed and chopped
    • Parsley and walnuts for topping

This recipe is rich, flavorful, and sure to impress. Some of the key ingredients are lamb racks, all-purpose flour, garlic, and port wine. The star of this dish is undoubtedly the Fig Port Wine Sauce made with Port wine, chicken stock, garlic cloves, balsamic vinegar, dried figs, salt and black pepper. When combined with the succulent rack of lamb it forms a perfect marriage of flavors.

The Recipe How-To

 The perfect way to impress your dinner guests.
The perfect way to impress your dinner guests.

Step 1: Season and Rub the Lamb Rack

We start by rubbing the lamb rack with a herb crust. For this purpose, mix 2 tablespoons of chopped parsley, 2 tablespoons of finely chopped walnuts and 2 finely chopped garlic cloves in a bowl. Then add 1 tablespoon of all-purpose flour and give it a good mix. After that, season the lamb racks generously with salt and pepper on all sides. Finally add the walnut herb mixture to coat the lamb rack.

Step 2: Pan-Seared Lamb Racks

Preheat oven to 375°F (190°C). Heat a tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil in an oven-proof pan over medium-high heat. Add the herbed lamb racks to the pan and cook for 4 minutes on each side until browned.

Step 3: Roast Lamb Racks

After the lamb racks are seared, place them in the preheated oven at 375°F (190°C) and roast for about 20-25 minutes or until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the center of the thickest part registers at least 135°F (57°C).

Step 4: Prepare Fig-and-Port-Wine Sauce

While the lamb is roasting, it’s time to prepare the sauce. Heat a tablespoon of olive oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add in one small onion, finely chopped and sauté until translucent. Then add in one cup of port wine, 1/2 cup chicken broth, and simmer for about 10-15 minutes until it reduces by half.

Step 5: Add Figs to The Sauce

Once the sauce has reduced by half, stir in one cup of dried figs that you have previously cooked in boiling water until they become tender; drain them beforehand.

Step 6: Balsamic Vinegar and Herb Lamb Fig Port Wine Sauce

After the figs have cooked in the sauce for 2-3 mins, add in two tablespoons of balsamic vinegar and 1 tablespoon of unsalted butter. Stir well while simmering for another minute. If you love herbed lamb, then add in a sprig of fresh rosemary and thyme to the fig port wine sauce as well.

Step 7: Serve

Once the lamb has rested for 10 minutes after roasting, slice the racks into individual portions. Serve hot with the fig-and-port-wine sauce on top. Enjoy your delicious roast rack lamb with your friends and family!

Substitutions and Variations

 Rack of lamb elevated to new heights.
Rack of lamb elevated to new heights.

This recipe offers a delightful combination of flavors and textures, but there are many substitutions and variations you can try to adapt it to your preferences or dietary restrictions.

If you are vegetarian, you can substitute the lamb with portobello mushrooms or eggplants for a hearty and earthy flavor.

If you cannot find dried figs, you can use dates, prunes, or apricots instead. Just make sure they are pitted and roughly chopped before adding them to the sauce.

For a gluten-free version, use cornstarch or a gluten-free flour blend in place of all-purpose flour.

If you prefer sweeter notes in your sauce, add more honey or maple syrup to balance out the acidity of the wine.

A splash of balsamic vinegar can also enhance the sweetness and complexity of the sauce. You can experiment with different types of vinegar, such as apple cider or red wine vinegar, to see which one complements the dish best.

Finally, if you want to make this dish more savory or herbaceous, you can add chopped herbs such as thyme, oregano, or sage to the meat rub or the sauce. A few toasted walnuts or slivered almonds can also add crunchiness and nuttiness to the dish.

Serving and Pairing

 Exquisite flavors that will leave you wanting more.
Exquisite flavors that will leave you wanting more.

This dish is a special occasion dish, perfect for impressing your guests. Let me tell you, the combination of herbs and figs with lamb is simply divine. When it comes to serving, I suggest that you let the roasted lamb rack rest for 15 minutes before carving between each rib to serve. This allows the juices to redistribute evenly throughout the meat.

For pairing, I would go with a full-bodied red wine, such as a Cabernet Sauvignon or Syrah. These types of wines have the tannins that can cut through the fats in the lamb and complement the richness of the fig sauce. If you prefer white wine, then Chardonnay would be an excellent choice as it can also stand up against the flavours of this dish.

When it comes to sides, I recommend serving this herbed rack of lamb with a side of roasted Brussels sprouts or asparagus coated in olive oil and seasoned well with salt and pepper. Alternatively, you could also serve it with garlicky mashed potatoes and green beans sautéed in garlic.

This dish is a masterpiece on its own. But if you want to add some crunchiness and texture to it, sprinkle some chopped toasted walnuts and fresh parsley over the top before serving. Trust me; it will add another layer of depth to an already flavourful dish.

Overall, this recipe has been carefully curated for a sophisticated meal filled with bold flavours that are sure to impress your guests.

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 Simple to make, yet oh-so impressive.
Simple to make, yet oh-so impressive.

One of the great things about this recipe for Rack of Lamb with Fig-and-Port-Wine Sauce is that it can be prepared ahead of time, making it perfect for busy schedules or special occasions.

To make ahead:

You can prepare the herb rub for the lamb racks, as well as the fig-port wine sauce a day or two beforehand. Store the fig sauce in an airtight container in the refrigerator and heat it gently in a saucepan right before serving. You can also season the lamb racks with salt and pepper and refrigerate them on a plate, covered with plastic wrap, up to 24 hours in advance.

To store:

If you have any leftover lamb or sauce, store them separately in airtight containers in your refrigerator. The lamb will stay fresh for up to four days, while the fig port wine sauce will last up to 7 days. You can reheat both on medium heat until warmed through.

To reheat:

You don’t want to dry out the lamb when reheating it, so you should do it slowly over low heat either in an oven preheated to 300°F/150°C or on a stovetop’s warm setting. To reheat the fig-port wine sauce, simply heat slowly in a small saucepan over low heat until warmed through.

When carefully reheating your prepared dish, you’ll find that all flavors work together even years after tasting this lip-smacking recipe.

Tips for Perfect Results

 A dish fit for any special occasion.
A dish fit for any special occasion.

To ensure that your rack of lamb with fig-and-port-wine sauce recipe turns out perfectly, there are a few tips to keep in mind.

Firstly, it is essential to rub the lamb well with the garlic, rosemary, thyme and seasoning before roasting. This will enhance the lamb’s flavour and create a delicious crust on the outside.

Secondly, make sure to sear the lamb racks in a hot pan with olive oil for about two minutes each side before roasting them in the oven. The searing will lock in the juices and add an extra depth of flavour to the meat.

Next, be sure to let the rack rest for roughly 10 minutes after you remove it from the oven. This will allow the juices to settle evenly throughout the meat and will result in tender and juicy lamb that melts in your mouth.

When making the fig-and-port-wine sauce, take care not to boil it for too long as it can become too thick and overly sweet. Instead, let it simmer over low heat until it reaches your desired consistency.

Lastly, if you’re feeling adventurous, try pairing this recipe with a bold red wine like Cabernet Sauvignon or Malbec for an added depth of flavour that complements both the lamb and fig port sauce perfectly.

Bottom Line

In conclusion, this recipe for Rack of Lamb with Fig-and-Port-Wine Sauce is a must-try for any lamb lover looking to elevate their cooking game. The combination of the herb-crusted lamb rack with the sweet and savory fig port wine sauce is truly a match made in culinary heaven. This dish is perfect for special occasions or a romantic dinner for two. With just a few quality ingredients and some simple steps, you can create an impressive meal that will impress your guests.

Don’t be afraid to make substitutions or variations to suit your taste preferences. Experiment with different types of nuts or add fresh herbs to the sauce for an extra burst of flavor. And be sure to pair this dish with a bold red wine like a Cabernet Sauvignon or Merlot.

Remember, cooking is all about having fun and trying new things. So next time you’re in the mood for a special occasion dish, give this Herb-Crusted Rack of Lamb with Fig-and-Port-Wine Sauce recipe by Alison Attenborough a try. Your taste buds will thank you!

Rack of Lamb With Fig-And-Port-Wine Sauce

Rack of Lamb With Fig-And-Port-Wine Sauce Recipe

Found this online at Good Housekeeping. It has a whole menu for Easter dinner. This is recipe#1. "Juanita McGrath, of Opa-Locka, FL, contributed this recipe. Juanita loves being inventive, and she often uses fruit in her cooking. This recipe is made with dried figs but when fresh figs are in season, Juanita picks them from the trees in her yard and uses them in the sauce."
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Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 55 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine European
Calories 367.1 kcal


  • 2 lbs lamb rib roasts (Two 8-rib roasts)
  • salt


  • 1 1/2 cups port wine
  • 2 tablespoons salad oil
  • 1 small onion, minced
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 10 dried figs, each cut in half
  • 1/2 teaspoon browning sauce (optional) or 1/2 teaspoon seasoning, sauce (optional)


  • 1/2 cup walnuts, coarsely chopped and toasted
  • minced parsley


  • ROAST:
  • Preheat oven to 375ºF.
  • Rub each lamb rib roast with 1/2 teaspoon salt.
  • In large roasting pan (15 1/2" by 10 1/2"), place lamb rib roasts, meat-side up.
  • Insert meat thermometer into center of a roast, making sure pointed end of thermometer does not touch bone.
  • Roast lamb 40 minutes or until meat thermometer reaches 140 degrees F for rare or until of desired doneness.
  • When roasts are done, remove to large platter.
  • Let stand 15 minutes for easier carving.
  • SAUCE:
  • Add 1 cup water to drippings in roasting pan.
  • Stir until brown bits are loosened.
  • Pour mixture through sieve into 4-cup measuring cup.
  • Skim off fat, if any, from drippings mixture.
  • Add port wine and enough water to equal 3 1/2 cups.
  • In 3-quart saucepan over medium-high heat, in hot salad oil, cook onion and garlic until tender but not browned.
  • Stir in flour; cook 1 minute.
  • Stir in port-wine mixture, figs, browning and seasoning sauce, and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Over high heat, heat to boiling.
  • Reduce heat to medium-low; simmer 10 minutes or until figs are tender and sauce thickens slightly.
  • Spoon sauce around lamb.
  • Sprinkle with toasted walnuts.
  • Garnish lamb with parsley.

Add Your Own Notes


Serving: 189gCalories: 367.1kcalCarbohydrates: 16.2gProtein: 24.7gFat: 17.6gSaturated Fat: 4.9gCholesterol: 74.8mgSodium: 97.5mgFiber: 1.7gSugar: 9.1g
Keyword < 4 Hours, Beginner Cook, Easy, Egg-free, Free Of..., Lactose-free, Lamb/Sheep, Meat, Spring
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