Posted on May 9, 2016 by

May – Roast Rack of Lamb with Saffron Sauce

Welcoming Spring lamb this month! We are excited to be introducing Sunday dining at The Cinnamon Club, where the best of British Spring lamb features prominently. Found out more here!

Now for May’s recipe of the month, don’t let the picture and cheffy flourishes with sauce put you off; my recipe for roast rack of lamb with saffron sauce is a very simple, yet impressive dish to wow your guests with at a dinner party. You can make the sauce and marinate the meat ahead of time, leaving you just to roast, rest, slice and serve! 

Serves 4


  • 2 x 8-bone racks of lamb, cut in half
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil

For the marinade

  • 1 tbsp ginger and garlic paste
  • 1 tsp red chilli powder
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 tsp salt
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 12g Greek yoghurt
  • 1 tbsp chopped fresh coriander, leaves and stalks
  • 1/2 tsp Garam Masala
  • A pince of sugar

For the sauce

  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 4 cloves
  • 2 black cardamom pods
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 400g tomatoes, roughly chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 large onion, roughly chopped
  • 2.5cm piece of fresh ginger, peeled and ground in a mortar and pestle
  • 2 tsp red chilli powder
  • 500ml chicken stock or water
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp sugar
  • 1/4 tsp Garam Masala
  • A small pinch of saffron strands
  • 2 tbsp single cream
  • 15g cold butter


If the racks of lamb haven’t already been prepared, trim off the skin and most of the fat, leaving just a thin layer of fat on the meat. Mix together the ingredients for the marinade, rub them over the lamb and set aside for 30 minutes.

To make the sauce, heat the oil to smoking point in a large saucepan and add the cloves, cardamom pods and the bay leaves. When they crackle, add the tomatoes, garlic, onion and ginger and cook for 4-5 minutes, until the tomatoes and onions are softened. Add the red chilli powder and stock and simmer on a low heat for about 15 minutes, until the tomatoes have completely broken down and the onion is very soft. Puree the sauce in a blender or food processor, then strain it through a fine sieve into a clean pan. Bring the sauce back to the boil, then simmer until thick enough to coat the back of a wooden spoon. Add the salt, sugar, and garam masala, then sprinkle in the saffron and simmer for 2-3 minutes. Just before serving stir in the cream and finally finish the sauce by stirring in the cold butter. Do not let the sauce boil after adding the butter or it will separate and become thin. Set aside and keep hot.

To cook the lamb, heat the oil in a large, heavy-based frying pan on a high heat. Add the lamb racks and sear for 2-3 minutes, until browned all over. Transfer them to a roasting tray and place in an oven preheated to 200 degrees C/Gas Mark 6 and roast for up to 15 minutes, depending on how well done you like your meat. Remove from the oven and leave to rest in a warm place for 5 minutes.

Divide the sauce between 4 serving plates, place the lamb on top and serve immediately with stir-fried greens.