Grilled Lamb Salad with Cumin Vinaigrette

For a pretty blend of colors as well as flavors, Sang Yoon lays slices of cumin-spiced lamb on a bed of jicama, carrot and lettuce. "Lamb seasoned with cumin is very Indian, as well as Sichuan and Yunnan. But no one in Asia would serve lamb on a salad; that's just me being Californian," Yoon says.

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  • Total Time:
  • Servings: 4

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  • One 1-pound piece boneless leg of lamb, about 3 inches thick
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil, plus more for rubbing
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon honey or agave nectar
  • 1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
  • Freshly ground white pepper
  • 4 cups thinly sliced romaine lettuce
  • One 6-ounce piece of jicama, peeled and cut into matchsticks
  • 1 large carrot, cut into matchsticks
  • 1 medium seedless cucumber, peeled and cut into matchsticks
  • 1/2 cup shredded basil, plus 4 sprigs
  • 2 red jalapeños, seeded and sliced
  • 4 cilantro sprigs

How to make this recipe

  1. Light a grill. Rub the lamb with oil, sprinkle with 1 teaspoon of the cumin and season with salt and black pepper. Let stand at room temperature for 10 minutes.

  2. Meanwhile, in a bowl, combine the vinegar, honey, mustard and the remaining 1 teaspoon of cumin. Whisk in the 1/4 cup of oil and season with salt and white pepper.

  3. Grill the lamb over moderate heat, turning a few times, until charred and medium-rare, about 12 minutes. Transfer the lamb to a carving board; let rest for 5 minutes.

  4. In a large bowl, toss the romaine with the jicama, carrot, cucumber, shredded basil and jalapeños. Add the dressing and toss well. Transfer to plates. Thinly slice the lamb and arrange the slices on the salad. Garnish with the cilantro and basil sprigs and serve.

Suggested Pairing

The ideal pairing for the luscious meat: a big Trappist ale like Chimay Blue.

Contributed By Photo © Tina Rupp Published February 2010

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