Grilled Lamb Salad Recipe With Cumin Vinaigrette

lamb salad

I know this doesn’t look like much, but please believe me, this grilled lamb salad recipe is “much”!

Maybe I should have put a shiny fork across the salad bowl.  But not to fret, I’ll have plenty more photography chances with this one as I’ll definitely be serving it up over and over.

I found this on Sunday while leisurely catching up on food magazine reading.   You see, I have this pile of food magazines next to the bed that can get quite unruly if I get behind on my reading. My husband calls it the “Rat’s Nest”.

Currently in the Rat’s Nest, you’ll find Food and Wine, Bon Appetit, Saveur, Sunset, The Food Network Magazine…Oh, I guess you can count Wine Spectator too, since some of those wineries can put out some great little recipes here and there.

I’ve been wanting to prepare lamb since Easter and haven’t done it, so this recipe with its interesting combination of lamb and cumin vinaigrette promptly received a sticky note to mark its location.

This salad is as texturally interesting as it is in flavor. Matchstick pieces of jicama, cucumber and carrot all with different levels of “crunch” make a fabulous combination as well as looking quite pretty. And tossed with that Cumin Vinaigrette…Lordy! Delicious. So delicious that you almost forget about those tender slices of grilled leg-0-lamb until they melt in your mouth with flavor. Did I mention easy? Especially easy using a mandolin for those matchsticks. Take a look:

I love Chef Sang Yoon’s comment for this creation:  “Lamb seasoned with cumin is very Indian, as well as Sichuan and Yunnan. But no one in Asia would serve lamb on a salad; that’s just me being Californian”.

You’ll find the recipe below, or hop on over to  to add it to your “favorites” over at  It’s really a more high tech method for marking recipes you want to try.  :-)

  • One 1-pound piece boneless leg of lamb, about 3 inches thick
  • ¼ cup vegetable oil, plus more for rubbing
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon honey or agave nectar
  • ½ teaspoon dry mustard
  • Freshly ground white pepper
  • 4 cups thinly sliced romaine lettuce
  • One 6-ounce piece of jicama, peeled and cut into matchsticks
  • 1 large carrot, cut into matchsticks
  • 1 medium seedless cucumber, peeled and cut into matchsticks
  • ½ cup shredded basil, plus 4 sprigs
  • 2 red jalapeños, seeded and sliced
  • 4 cilantro sprigs
  1. Light a grill. Rub the lamb with oil, sprinkle with 1 teaspoon of the cumin and season with salt and black pepper. Let stand at room temperature for 10 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, in a bowl, combine the vinegar, honey, mustard and the remaining 1 teaspoon of cumin. Whisk in the ¼ cup of oil and season with salt and white pepper.
  3. Grill the lamb over moderate heat, turning a few times, until charred and medium-rare, about 12 minutes. Transfer the lamb to a carving board; let rest for 5 minutes.
  4. In a large bowl, toss the romaine with the jicama, carrot, cucumber, shredded basil and jalapeños. Add the dressing and toss well. Transfer to plates. Thinly slice the lamb and arrange the slices on the salad. Garnish with the cilantro and basil sprigs and serve.

Grilled Lamb Salad With Cumin Vinaigrette…It’s What’s For Dinner

On this day..

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  1. says

    Zio loves lamb. And I love the crispy veggies (especially the jicama). I’m going to have to make this as soon as I’m back on my feet!

  2. says

    I’ve never thought to make a lamb salad before but what a great idea! I have a pile of cookbooks/magazines next to my bed also. It’s bad. Really bad.

  3. says

    LOL – if I added many cooking magazines to all the printed out recipes laying on my kitchen stack, I’d never catch a break.
    This recipe sounds so yum – I love lamb so much, but D doesn’t, so I rarely get to fix it. HOWEVER, I also love cumin, and that dressing will be enjoyed on my next salad. I never would have thought of adding cumin to a vinagrette, so I’m excited!

  4. says

    First of all, Lea Ann, I love the bowls you served your lamb salad in. And second, I love that the lamb is rare. I dislike overcooked lamb, don’t you?
    And then, the vinaigrette sounds delicious! That’s what makes a great salad, I think. Good use of jicama….saw some in Whole Foods and almost bought some, but wondered what I had new and different to try with it. Now I have a lovely salad recipe!

  5. says

    I have the same rat’s nest going on! This is a wonderful and very flavor salad! I would have to swap out the lamb – I bet it would be just as delicious with thinly sliced steak.

  6. says

    First, let me say that I have the same exact rat nest on my bedside table, and except for the Sunset, the same magazines too :-)

    Awesome lamb dish.

    • says

      And don’t you just love your “rats nest?” :-) I’d like to add Southern Living to the pile, but haven’t. As always, thanks for stopping by Velva.


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