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Italian lamb steaks with agridolce topping

  • 4-6
Italian lamb steaks with agridolce topping

The crispy topping on these tender New Zealand lamb steaks has been inspired by the Italian way of combining sweet and sour flavours. So included here are ingredients not often used together: chocolate, citrus rind, capers and buttery peanuts.


  • 4-6 lamb steaks, trimmed

Lemon and rosemary marinade

  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1 lemon, rind and juice
  • 2 tablespoons freshly chopped rosemary
  • 1 tablespoon liquid honey
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil

Agridolce topping

  • ½ cup fresh white breadcrumbs
  • ¼ cup pinenuts
  • 25 grams dark chocolate, roughly chopped
  • ½ teaspoon finely grated orange rind
  • ½ teaspoon finely grated lemon rind
  • 1 tablespoon freshly chopped mint
  • 1½ tablespoons capers, rinsed, drained and chopped


  1. In a resealable bag, combine the garlic, lemon rind and juice, rosemary, honey and oil. Season with pepper. Add the lamb and massage to coat in the marinade. Seal bag and allow the steaks to marinate for at least 20 minutes.
  2. In a small heavy-based frying pan, toast the breadcrumbs until crisp and golden, tossing frequently. Set aside in a bowl. Add the pinenuts to the frying pan and toss until golden. Add the breadcrumbs and cool.
  3. When cool and ready to serve, mix breadcrumbs and pinenuts with chocolate, orange and lemon rind, mint and capers. If wished add a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil to just moisten the crumbs.
  4. Remove the steaks from the marinade. Cook the steak in a hot, well-oiled frying pan for 3-5 minutes each side. Cover and leave in a warm place for 3-4 minutes before serving. The resting time will ensure lovely tender meat. Serve the steaks topped with a little of the agridolce mix. Accompany with your favourite vegetables.

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