Grilled Moroccan Lamb with Barley Couscous

Lamb chops can be tough when they’re grilled, but a new method I’ve started using always produces a tender, juicy chop. I start with lamb T-bones, which are the same cut as beef Porterhouse steaks. By giving them a good sear then turning off the grill, they continue to cook slowly in the residual heat. After 15 minutes, they’ll be succulent.

I like to pair them with barley couscous, which has a lot more taste than regular wheat couscous. (The cooking method is the same.)

Serve harissa sauce, a spicy chili-laden melange, on the side or use Asian chili sauce as a substitute.

Ready time: 1 hour and 30 minutes, including marinating time
Servings: 4


1 teaspoon ground cumin

½ teaspoon ground cinnamon

2 teaspoons chopped garlic

1 tablespoon lemon juice

2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 tomato, pureed

Meat and veggies:

8 T-bone lamb chops, cut 1¼ -inch thick

2 Japanese eggplants, sliced in half lengthwise

2 medium zucchini, sliced in half lengthwise

Salt and freshly ground pepper

¼ cup oil

Barley couscous:

1 cup chicken stock or water

½ cup chopped carrots

½ cup chopped green onions

2 tablespoons chopped parsley

1 teaspoon hot Spanish paprika

Salt and freshly ground pepper

1 cup barley couscous


2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint


Combine marinade ingredients in a bowl. Brush all over lamb, eggplant and zucchini. Season with salt and pepper. Marinate at room temperature for 30 minutes.

Preheat grill to high. Remove eggplant and zucchini from marinade, brush with oil and place on grill. Cook covered for 4 to 5 minutes per side or until browned and tender. Zucchini may take slightly longer. Reserve.

Remove chops from marinade, brush with oil and place on grill. Sear 2 minutes per side or until they are grill-marked. Turn off the grill and close cover. Leave for 12 minutes for medium rare or 15 minutes for medium, turning once. Transfer chops to a platter and let sit for 5 minutes.

Cut the grilled eggplant and zucchini into ½-inch dice.

Bring stock to a boil and stir in carrots, onions, parsley, paprika, salt and pepper. Stir in barley couscous. Cover and remove from heat. Let sit for 5 minutes. Uncover and stir in eggplant and zucchini.

Spoon couscous onto serving plates and top with 2 chops each. Sprinkle each plate with mint and serve harissa on the side.