lamb chops
Photo: Romulo Yanes

Serves 4

Ingredients

  • 1 garlic clove, optional
  • 2 pounds bone-in lamb chops (any kind, at least 1" thick)
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 lemons, quartered, for serving

Directions


Turn the kitchen fan on and, if you can, open a window. Heat the oven to its maximum temperature, ideally 500°F, and set a rack in the lowest possible position (if you can, put it directly on the oven floor). Set a large ovenproof skillet on the rack and let it heat in the oven until it is almost smoking, 5 to 15 minutes, depending on your oven.

While the pan is heating, cut the garlic clove in half if you’re using it and rub it all over the meat. Carefully remove the heated pan from the oven, sprinkle its surface with a generous pinch of salt, add as many of the chops as will fit without overcrowding, and immediately return the pan to the oven.

Roast the chops until seared and dark brown underneath; they're ready to turn when they release from the pan easily, 2 to 5 minutes, depending on the thickness of the chops. Cook on the other side to the desired doneness, another 2 to 5 minutes; start checking the inside with a sharp knife after 2 minutes. Remove the chops from the pan, sprinkle with pepper, and let them rest for at least 5 minutes; if you're cooking in batches, pour any juices over the meat and repeat with the remaining chops. Serve with the lemon.

From How to Cook Everything: The Basics (Wiley), by Mark Bittman.