Fresh-Pressed Olive Oil Club

Greek Lamb Chops (Paidakia)

Greek Lamb Chops (Paidakia)

Melbourne, a sister city to Thessaloniki, is home to one of the largest Greek populations outside of Greece and Cyprus. It’s no wonder, then, that the local cuisine thrums with Hellenic influences.


  • 8 large lamb rib chops
  • 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil, plus more for searing and serving
  • 6 cloves garlic, crushed with the flat of a knife blade
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves
  • 1 tablespoon fresh chopped rosemary
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano (optional)
  • Zest and juice of a lemon
  • Coarse salt (kosher or sea)
  • Freshly ground black pepper


Step 1

Place the lamb chops in a glass baking dish large enough to hold them. (You may need two dishes.). Make the marinade: In a bowl, combine the 1/3 cup of olive oil with the garlic, mustard, thyme, rosemary, and the lemon zest and juice. Whisk, then pour over the lamb chops. Cover and refrigerate for 3 to 8 hours. (If you’re in a rush to get dinner on the table, marinate for 1 hour at room temperature.)

Step 2

When ready to cook, preheat the oven to 375°F. In the meantime, heat a tablespoon of olive oil in a large cast iron skillet over medium-high heat for about 2 minutes, until the pan is hot and the oil is shimmering. Season the chops well on both sides with salt and pepper. Working in batches if necessary, sear the chops in a single layer for about 2 minutes per side, or until nicely browned.

Step 3

Immediately transfer the skillet to the preheated oven. Roast the chops for 2 to 5 minutes for medium-rare to medium, longer if you like your lamb well-done. Transfer to a platter or plates. (Do not allow them to remain in the hot skillet.) Tent with foil, and let the chops rest for 5 minutes.

Step 4

Serve the chops with lemon wedges and additional olive oil for drizzling.

Serves 8 — Recipe adapted from