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Redmesa barbecued lamb chops with grilled vegetables and blue corn chapattis



For marinade

1 1/2 cups apple cider

1/4 cup mild salsa

1 bay leaf

1 cinnamon stick

2 crushed garlic cloves

1 tbsp. cracked black peppercorns

2 tsp. kosher salt

1 tbsp. mustard powder


Immerse eight double-cut Colorado lamb chops in the marinade for 20 to 30 minutes.

For Redmesa barbecue sauce

1 cup apple cider

2 tbsp. red chili powder

1 Fresno pepper, minced

1 jalapeno pepper, minced

1/4 cup diced green chili

2 garlic cloves, crushed

1 cup diced red tomato

2 tbsp. tomato paste

1/4 cup minced white onion

1/4 cup honey

1/2 tsp. cumin

1 tsp. coriander

3 oz. dark chocolate, chopped

pinch of ground cloves


Combine all of the above ingredients in a saucepan, bring to a low boil, reduce the heat and allow to simmer for about half an hour. Be sure to stir frequently.

For blue corn chapattis

1 cup blue cornmeal

1/2 tsp. salt

1 tbsp. olive oil

1 tbsp. mustard seed

1 cup white flour

3/4 cup water

1 tbsp. parsley, minced

1 tbsp. red pepper, minced


In a mixing bowl, combine the cornmeal, flour and salt, and mix well. Make a well in the center and add the oil and water. Mix the flour into the liquid and knead. Add the parsley, mustard seed and red pepper; knead until all ingredients are well mixed. The dough should be smooth and elastic.

Set the dough aside and allow it to rest for at least 15 minutes, but not more than 45 minutes. Form the dough into plum-sized balls, then flatten the balls on a floured board until very thin, in a circle about 4 inches in diameter, to make chapattis.

Place the chapattis on an area of the grill that is not too hot and cook until bubbles begin to form on the surface. Flip the chapattis over and cook for only about 20 to 30 more seconds. Place cooked chapattis in a napkin-lined basket and cover; be sure to serve warm.

For the vegetables, cook some of your favorites in a mesh grill basket. We like to use things such as corn, carrots, fava beans, baby squash, tomatillos, new potatoes and baby tomatoes. Keep the seasoning light, as there is plenty of flavor on the plate already, just a little bit of salt, pepper and maybe a bit of finely cut basil and sage. Drizzle the vegetables while they cook with some of the barbecue sauce for a unique flavor.

To finish this dish, heat a grill (preferably charcoal) to high. Remove the lamb from the marinade and place it on the grill. Turn the chops so that all sides are seared quickly, and then reduce the grill heat to low. Baste the chops with a thick coat of the barbecue sauce and cover the grill.

Keep the heat low and baste the lamb chops thoroughly with the barbeque sauce every five to 10 minutes through the cooking process. We prefer to serve our lamb medium rare to medium, which usually takes about 15 to 20 minutes. Give the lamb one final thick basting right before serving. Serves four.


I started this dish by thinking about what I feel would best represent the all-around flavors of Colorado. I thought that having a main dish of lamb would be a great way to show what I like the most about modern Colorado foods: involved and caring ranchers, superior products and great taste. Then I added historical flavors that have influenced Colorado dishes for so many years: chiles, tomatoes, peppers and a variety of Southwestern spices. I put in some Colorado-raised vegetables to round out my dish, and also because grilled vegetables have a delicious and unique flavor. I then finished it off by adding a historically authentic type of flatbread one whose history can be traced back to the beginning of bread making.

Submitted by chef Lawrence A. Johnson

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