Pepper-Crusted Lamb Kabobs with Tomatillos and Eggplant
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
3 shallots, finely diced
1 garlic clove, minced
6 tablespoons chicken broth
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
2 teaspoons ground coriander seed
1 teaspoon chopped fresh Italian parsley leaves
1/2 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme leaves
1/2 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary leaves
Ground black pepper
1 boneless leg of lamb, about 1 pound, trimmed of excess fat, cut into
1 tablespoon coarsely crushed pink peppercorns
1 tablespoon coarsely crushed black peppercorns
4–5 slices lean bacon, cut in half crosswise
1 small eggplant, cut into 1-1/2-inch cubes
3 medium tomatillos, husked, rinsed, quartered, and seeded
Extra-virgin olive oil
1. In a medium sauté pan over medium heat, warm the oil. Add the shallots and garlic and sauté them for 1 minute. Add the remaining vinaigrette ingredients and mix well. If desired, to fully incorporate the flavors, let the vinaigrette sit at room temperature for 1 hour. Season with salt and pepper.
2. Prepare the grill for direct cooking over medium heat (350° to 450°F).
3. In a medium bowl toss the lamb cubes with the crushed peppercorns. Wrap each bacon strip around one or two cubes of eggplant. Skewer the kabobs by alternating cubes of pepper-crusted lamb, eggplant with bacon, and tomatillos. Lightly brush the skewers with oil.
4. Brush the cooking grates clean. Grill the kabobs over direct medium heat, with the lid closed as much as possible, until the bacon is fully cooked and the lamb is medium rare, about 8 minutes, turning three or four times. Remove the kabobs from the grill and let rest for 3 to 5 minutes.
5. Warm the vinaigrette over low heat. Place the kabobs on a platter, drizzle with the vinaigrette, and serve with rice pilaf, if desired.