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Mandarin Orange Oriental Sauce Lamb Chops with Red Pepper Pasta


I love the combination of a smokey grilled flavor with sweet, salty, and spicy, and this recipe has all that in one! The mandarin orange lamb chops with the pasta is exquisite! Created for the 2013 World Food Championships, I wanted to take a twist on pasta, the ‘themed’ ingredient for the category I competed in {Recipe}, that didn’t include typically what you’d expect in a pasta ‘sauce’.

The culinary artistry that went into developing this recipe took some time even though it appears that the ingredients are somewhat typical~~hope you enjoy as much as my taste testers did~~while I didn’t used this recipe at the WFC it very well could be modified into something else for another food competition!

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  • 8 petite (very small chops for judges) long bone-in rack of lamb chops (rack of lamb sliced into individual chops by butcher)
  • 12 large green onions with tops, divided
  • 1 can + 4 individual serving cups of DOLE mandarin oranges, divided
  • 1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 2 teaspoons sea salt
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons coarse ground pepper
  • 3/4 cup orange marmalade jam
  • 2 tablespoons garlic, chopped
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons Korean sweet & spicy sauce–divided (can substitute similar Asian sauce)
  • 1 package (16 ounce) pasta noodles, those that you can wrap, if you like, around the chop, I used a red pepper infused noodle, your choice on your noodle!


Servings 8
Adapted from


Step 1

Drain the can of mandarin oranges reserving the liquid for use (will yield about 1 cup of liquid). Put oranges in a bowl & set aside. Drain the 4 individual cups (will yield about 1 cup) of oranges. Put oranges from cups in another bowl.

Marinade/Sauce preparation: Put 8 green onions on a hot grill (350-400 degrees) and char about 3-5 minutes. Put the onions and drained oranges from the can on cutting board and finely chop/mince. (Can put in food processor for about 2 minutes.)

Put chopped mixture in a bowl and add 2 tablespoons of canola oil, ½ tsp salt and ½ tsp pepper and blend.

Lamb Chop Preparation: Use 1 tsp salt and 1 tsp pepper to coat both sides of the lamb chops. Put chops in a shallow pie plate. Remove ¼ cup of the onion/orange mixture and coat the lamb chops. Let them marinade as you finish making the sauce.

Making Sauce: Put ½ cup oil in a saucepan over burner on medium high. Add garlic, ½ tsp salt, 1 tsp pepper, and sauté about 2 minutes. Add remaining onion/orange chopped mixture, marmalade jam, ½ tsp Korean sweet and spicy sauce, and let it come to a boil for about 7-10 minutes. Reduce heat to low and simmer about 15-20 minutes to thicken the sauce. Stir occasionally. Meanwhile, make the garnish and grill the lamb chops.

Making Garnish: Put the drained oranges from the 4 individual cups in a skillet coated with cooking spray. Sauté on a medium high burner about 4-5 minutes. Remove from heat. Chiffonade slice the remaining green onions and add to the oranges. Remove from blaze. Set aside for plating.

Grilling Lamb Chops: Coat grill with cooking spray. Heat to 400 to 450 degrees. Cook lamb chops about 3-4 minutes per side. Remove to a plate and let rest about 5 minutes.

Noodles: Prepare noodles according to package directions. Drain and toss in about ½+ cup of the warm thickened sauce and 1 tbl (taste to see if more is needed for spiciness) of the Korean sweet & spicy sauce.

Serve & watch your guests experience nirvana!

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