5garlic cloves300 mlpouring cream2 tbsprosemary, coarsely chopped, plus 1 extra sprig60 gmbutter, coarsely chopped1 tspcaster sugar6white witlof, halved lengthways140 gm (2 cups)coarse fresh sourdough breadcrumbs15 gmparmesan, finely grated125 ml (½ cup)olive oil4lamb rumps (about 300gm each), at room temperature
Preheat oven to 200C. Bruise one garlic clove with the flat of a knife, combine in a small saucepan with cream and rosemary sprig and simmer over medium heat until slightly reduced (3-5 minutes), set aside.
Meanwhile, heat two-thirds of the butter in a large frying pan until starting to foam. Sprinkle sugar over cut sides of witlof, then cook, cut-side down, until golden (1-2 minutes). Transfer, cut-side up, to a 1-litre ovenproof baking dish. Strain cream mixture through a coarse sieve over witlof and season to taste.
Combine breadcrumbs, parmesan, one-third of the oil and half the rosemary in a small bowl, toss to combine, season to taste then scatter over witlof. Dot with remaining butter and roast until golden and bubbling (15-20 minutes).
Meanwhile, pound remaining garlic cloves, remaining rosemary and 1 tsp sea salt flakes in a mortar and pestle until a coarse paste forms. Add half the remaining oil and set aside. Heat remaining oil in a large frying pan over high heat, add lamb rumps, season to taste, and cook, turning occasionally, until golden on each side (1-2 minutes). Top with garlic mixture and roast until cooked to your liking (8-10 minutes for medium-rare). Set aside to rest (8-10 minutes), then slice and serve with witlof gratin.
This recipe is from the June 2010 issue of Australian Gourmet Traveller.