The griddle pan wasn't around when I was growing up, but I couldn't manage without one now. It's the perfect way to cook chops and steaks because the meat sits on the ridges of the pan and the fat runs into the grooves in between. This has to be healthier than letting the meat sit in its own fat during cooking.
6-8 loin lamb chops
Olive oil, for brushing
1 small bunch of fresh rosemary
Sea salt and freshly milled black pepper
For the mint sauce
1tbs redcurrant jelly
3tbs malt vinegar
15g fresh mint leaves, finely chopped
Spinach with garlic and cream
First make the mint sauce. Melt the jelly over a low heat in a small pan. Remove from the heat and stir in the vinegar. Leave to cool before adding the mint. Use the sauce as soon as possible (within an hour of making it) or the mint will discolour.
Brush the meat lightly with olive oil. Season the fat and meat with salt and pepper.
Heat a dry griddle pan over a high heat until very hot. Put the chops in the pan fat side down and cook for four to five minutes until the fat renders and becomes crisp.
Lay the chops flat on one of their sides and strew the rosemary sprigs over the meat. Cook for another four to five minutes, basting frequently with the fat in the pan.
Turn the chops over and cook the other sides for the same length of time, basting as before.
Serve the chops on a bed of spinach, with the mint sauce in a small bowl.
Key to perfection: Rendering the fat in a griddle pan at the beginning of cooking will give the chops a crisp edge, then you can use the melted fat for basting the meat as it continues to cook. This will make the meat naturally moist and juicy, without the need for a lot of extra oil or fat.
by Marcus Wareing, chef-patron of Petrus.