Doing Jamie: Gennaro Contaldo’s Italian Rack of Lamb


I like it when Jamie Oliver features chefs that influence and inspire him in his magazine. I’ve tried recipes from his guest chefs before, for instance, Miles New’s roasted pork sandwiches with bottom of the pan relish fantastic results.


Today I tried Gennaro Contaldo’s Carre D’Agnello con Carciofini using some local lamb from Phillipe the butcher.  It was so good!  I’m so very sorry that my plate picture wasn’t to my liking.  I can only blame M. Parret 😀  He has the worse knives, and by the time I finished sawing through the lamb, I just threw it on the plate and voila!  Next time I’ll bring my professional knives :)  We drank a Chenas. 


But we had a marvelous time!  We had one of those protracted lunches that M. Parret loves with lively discussion, especially about De Gaulle and the Americans.  M. Parret was on the American side, while one of the guests was a fierce Gaullist, who saw the saving of France’s lardons by the Americans as some kind of conspiracy to occupy France and claim the country’s resources.  As if we coveted their cheese or they had oil!  To end this debate, I wiped the tears of laughter from my face, poured us all another glass of Champagne and annonced the next course 😀


In keeping with the Italian theme, I roasted some aubergine, courgette and some mushrooms on the edge of senility from the refrigerator.  I feel great when I can rescue vegetables that are almost past it.


This lamb dish is definitely a “company coming” plate.  It’s easy and, if presented in a civilized manner, elegant.  The accompanying artichokes and sundried tomatoes were a brilliant addition.


After the salad, as always, a nice selection of cheese; Camembert, Chaource, Comte and a smoked raclette cheese.  An aged Bordeaux with.


For dessert, raspberries from M. Parret’s garden.


And lovely little apricots.


Coffee and digestif at 4:00 p.m.  It’s not as if we had to get back to work or anything 😀

Gennaro Contaldo’s Italian Rack of Lamb

1 rack of lamb

Salt and pepper

Olive oil

8 ounces sliced proscuitto, cut into strips

4 large spring onions, cut in halves or quarters vertically

2 large whites of spring onions, thinly sliced

Leaves from 4 sprigs fresh thyme

2 small jars mini artichoke hearts, drained and halved

1 jar sundried tomatoes, drained and halved

Season the lamb with salt and pepper, then rub with olive oil.  Layer the rack first with the proscuitto and then the halfs of spring onions.  Roast at 450 F for 40 minutes.

Saute the sliced spring onions in 1 tbsp of olive oil until soft, then add the thyme, artichokes and tomatoes, then continue to saute for 2 minutes.  Add the artichoke mixture to the roasting pan for the last 10 minutes.

Wine suggestion: Chenas                 

About cookinginsens

An American living in Burgundy, France
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32 Responses to Doing Jamie: Gennaro Contaldo’s Italian Rack of Lamb

  1. ambrosiana says:

    Looks so simple and delicious!

  2. Hmmm, take over France for the cheese. You know, that might not be a bad idea. 🙂

  3. Mad Dog says:

    Historically, I think there was a discussion about annexing France at the end of WW2 (I definitely remember reading something about it).
    I bet that lamb was good, Gennaro is quite talented – did you see his shows with Carluccio?
    Series two is possibly better than Series one 😉

  4. I love the way you eat!

  5. Larisa says:

    What a great recipe, I love the sun dried tomatoes and artichokes with it.

  6. Mona says:

    Ah, to live your life. Looks wonderful.

  7. abrooke65 says:

    I love lamb. That’s a meal fit for a king…or just a regular night. You only live once you should eat with passion! Thanks for sharing.

  8. Good stuff. Having good knives is so important, My French neighbours have dreadful kitchen knives but a dependance full of lethally sharp tools! Going back to the pictures by Miles New….he was my assistant for some years. He was going to be a fashion photographer before he started working with me.

    • Thank you Roger. I had to take several restorative sips of Champagne to get through the carving of the rack! The things you don’t know about your neighbor’s kitchen tools, mind boggling!

  9. Colette says:

    This looks so delicious, it is making me hungry. Everything looks so lovely!

  10. I love Italian dishes built on just a few quality ingredients that let the great flavors come through. So what time is dinner tomorrow, I will be right over…

  11. Lovely spread Rosemary and those cheeses – yum. We don’t have much lamb in our house as my wife isn’t a fan sadly 🙁

  12. Mimi says:

    You had me at smoked raclette. Omg

  13. I took a sharp inhale when I saw that picture. Kind of a Ohhhhh moment. What a meal too!

  14. Pingback: Italian Style Rack of Lamb | Recipe Archive

  15. What wonderful conversation to go with a such a beautiful meal! And we shouldn’t forget other reasons for an American invasion and occupation: perfume, lingerie, and lap dogs 🙂

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