Add Variety to your Diet with Lamb

Jun 12, 2017

NAMI lamb cuts imageAmericans eat significantly less lamb than they do beef, pork or chicken. They also eat less lamb than the rest of the world. Per capita lamb consumption around the world totals just over 4 pounds annually; however in the U.S., per capita lamb consumption was only 0.88 pounds in 2011. For families wanting to add more lamb to their diet, knowing how to cook different cuts of lamb is a good place to start.

Lamb chops (or loin chops) are the most common cut of lamb in the butcher case. A “T-shaped” bone typically runs through the meat, which is lean and tender. Each chop contains 3- to 4-ounces of meat, which is appropriate for an adult serving of protein. Grilling, broiling or pan-frying the chops makes for a delicious meal.

When TV chefs cook lamb, it will often be a rack of lamb. Sometimes two frenched racks will be tied together to create a crown roast for impressive presentation. Cut from the rib cage, a rack of lamb typically has 8 ribs in the full rack. These cuts are traditionally roasted or broiled to medium rare for the best flavor.

Lamb shanks can be either foreshanks or hindshanks. Shanks are often braised to create a dish that is low in fat and high in flavor.

The hind leg from a lamb can be purchased as a bone-in leg. These can be smoked or roasted whole for an impressive presentation, or cut into smaller pieces for dishes like stews or kebabs.

Recipes for incorporating lamb into the diet are often Mediterranean themed, utilizing dill or tzatziki sauce with the meat. While lamb is typically slightly higher in fat than beef, the meat has less marbling. This means fat-conscious consumers can trim the fat from the exterior of the meat after cooking for a leaner product than the beef counterparts.

For more information about cuts of meats, download MyMeatUp, a mobile app from the North American Meat Institute that offers information on cuts of meat, cooking methods and new recipes.



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