Roast Lamb with Braised Peppers, Aubergine Caviar and Basil Oil

A prime cut of lamb, simply roasted, is transformed into a restaurant-calibre feast with vibrant accompaniments of Mediterranean vegetables and herbs
By Richard Phillips
Roast Lamb with Braised Peppers, Aubergine Caviar and Basil Oil
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 4
  • Cook Time:
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Effort: medium


  • 2 bunches basil, blanched and refreshed
  • 4 lamb rumps, trimmed
  • salt and black pepper
  • 2 tsp butter

For the peppers

  • vegetable oil, for frying
  • 1 onion, very finely sliced
  • 3 red peppers, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 5 black olives and 5 green olives, sliced

For the aubergine caviar

  • 300 ml extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 aubergines
  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 1 sprigs thyme
  • 1 sprigs rosemary
  • basil

Tips and Suggestions

To make quenelles, shape the mixture between two dessertspoons to give smooth, neat egg-shaped portions.


1. Bring a saucepan of water to the boil. Throw in the basil and cook for 10 seconds, then drain and refresh under cold running water. Set aside to cool.

2. Preheat the oven to 180C/gas 4. Season the lamb with salt and pepper. Heat a roasting pan over a medium-high heat and when hot add the pieces of lamb and fry until well coloured on all sides. Add the butter and transfer to the oven to roast for 5-6 minutes. Remove the lamb from the oven, wrap in cling film and set aside to rest for 5 minutes.

3. In a lidded frying pan, heat a little oil. Add the sliced onion and cook for a few minutes until soft but not coloured. Add the red peppers, cover and stew slowly until the peppers and onions are tender. Remove from the heat and add the olives. Set aside.

4. In another frying pan, heat 150ml of the olive oil. Add the aubergines and fry until coloured. Then add the peeled garlic cloves, thyme and rosemary. Cover and cook until the aubergines are soft and mushy (about 20-25 minutes). Remove the larger herb stalks and set the aubergine mixture aside until cool enough to handle. Finely chop the aubergine mixture and season to taste.

5. In a food processor, blend together the blanched basil and the remaining 150ml of olive oil. Strain the mixture through a fine sieve.

6. To assemble the dish, place a few spoons of the red pepper mixture into the centre of the plate. Remove the lamb from the wrap, slice each into approximately 5 pieces and place on top of the pepper mix. Make quenelles of the aubergine caviar and place them on top. Drizzle with basil oil and garnish with deep-fried basil leaves (if using) before serving.

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