Mojito-Style Lamb Scottadito Recipe | Wine Enthusiast
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Mojito-Style Lamb Scottadito Is a Rum-Spiked Take on an Italian Classic

Scottadito roughly translates to “burnt finger,” an apt name for this irresistible Italian preparation that’s meant to be eaten with your fingers to get every last bit. The bright mojito-inspired pan sauce both cuts through the rich, juicy meat and riffs on the classic pairing of lamb and mint. Use multiple separate pans if multiplying this recipe for a party.

Lamb Scottadito alla Mojito


12 lamb rib chops, Frenched if desired
Kosher salt and fresh-ground black pepper, as needed
¼ cup dark rum, such as Myer’s or Bacardi Black
3 tablespoons fresh-squeezed lime juice
2 tablespoons honey
Extra-virgin olive oil, as needed
2 tablespoons minced shallots
¼ packed cup minced fresh mint
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into 4 pieces


Season lamb with salt and pepper and leave at room temperature for up to two hours, or refrigerate for up to 8 hours (bring to room temperature before cooking). In a small bowl, mix together rum, lime juice and honey, then set aside.

Place a heavy skillet (not nonstick, and large enough to hold 6 lamb chops in a single layer) over medium-high heat. Coat with oil and, when hot, add 6 chops. Cook to an internal temperature of 125°F for medium-rare (timing will depend on thickness of lamb, but usually no more than 3 minutes per side). Remove lamb to a platter, tent with foil, and repeat with remaining 6 chops.

While lamb rests, add shallots to the hot pan and cook until translucent and starting to brown, about 30 seconds. Add rum mixture, scraping up brown bits, and let boil until it thickens to a sauce consistency, about 2 minutes. Turn off heat and add mint and butter, stirring until butter melts. Taste and add salt, if needed.

Using tongs, drag chops through the sauce to coat. Serve immediately. Serves 4

Pair With

Barba 2021 Vasari (Montepulciano d’Abruzzo)

With vivid blackberry and plum fruit, mouthcoating tannins and a smoky background note, Montepulciano is a terrific foil for lamb. The bright acidity of this young bottling is an especially fine complement to the tart mojito glaze, with an herbal note that nods to the mint. As a bonus, this wine—like many vine de Montepulciano d’Abruzzo—is a remarkable value, which may help offset the cost of the lamb chops.

This article originally appeared in the April 2023 issue of Wine Enthusiast magazine. Click here to subscribe today!