Recently I had the chance to catch up with Deon from Mottainai Lamb to grab some of his amazing produce to put together a couple of recipes. His lamb is sensational, they are fed loads of carrots as part of an effort to reduce food waste (their neighbours run a carrot farm) and the byproduct is basically the wagyu of lamb.
I first met Deon at Gourmet Escape in the Valley last year when we ran the fire pit arena with Marco Pierre White, Jess Pryles and DJ BBQ (yeah, I’m name dropping and not ashamed about it) and so it felt fitting to use his lamb to recreate the dish I did in my demo: miso lamb ribs.
You can find out more about the lamb, their story and order lamb packs here: www.mottainailamb.com
Miso lamb ribs have it all: salty, fatty, sweet, umami – what more could you want.
This recipe is a longer process requiring a little forward planning, but the result is worth it I promise.
Also, this recipe and method was inspired heavily by the cookbook Recipes for a Good Time from the legends at Porteno in Sydney.
First we need to trim and smoke the lamb ribs.
While the Mottainai product is significantly more marbled and a little bigger, the trim and cook is going to be largely the same as our earlier article on smoked lamb ribs which you can find here.
The only differences of note are:
Rub: something as herby as treebark is going to clash with the miso flavours later so choose an all purpose rub or even just use salt and pepper – the rub’s key purpose here is to start building bark, our first layer of flavour. I used Lane’s Blackening as that is a decent all rounder plus I was at home with limited options.
Cook time: These took just shy of three hours all up, expect a slightly longer cook time than regular lamb ribs due to increased size.
Once your lamb ribs are probe tender (internal tends to be around the 206f / 96c mark) take them off the smoker, wrap in foil and allow to cool for an hour or so on the bench. After this, refrigerate for around 4 hours minimum.
While this is happening you can make your miso marinade
4 tbsp miso paste (it doesn’t really matter which one for this recipe, it is not as noticeable as it would be in a soup or broth)
150ml pale ale (oh no, you have to drink the rest!)
1 cup sugar
If you can be bothered, heat quickly to dissolve the sugar.
Note: Yes, there’s quite a lot of sugar, it’s a glaze.
Take your now cold lamb ribs out of the fridge
Slice in to individual ribs
Combine with miso marinade
Vac seal or otherwise contain
Refrigerate overnight, or as long as you can be bothered
Set up your charcoal grill of choice for medium direct heat.
Grill lamb ribs until the glaze has caramelised. From a food safety point of view the ribs need to go past 60c internal during this process but I would be surprised if this isn’t achieved during the grilling process.
This should only take 5-10 minutes.
Be careful with your direct heat, these lamb ribs are fatty plus the fat has already been rendered so you will get a fat fire surprisingly quickly if you’re not careful (I wasn’t careful) so pay attention.
If there’s any glaze left in your container feel free to brush it on for extra tasty goodness.
Give the Mottainai Lamb a try, you won’t be disappointed. The majority usually goes to export markets and restaurants so it’s a unique opportunity to try something pretty special; plus what else are you going to do, hang out with all your mates?