Recipe Greek Grilled Lamb Heart with Crispy and Shaved Fennel Salad

Mountain Cat

Senior Member
12 Apr 2019
Local time
2:03 PM
Hilltowns of Massachusetts
The Greek name for this salad is: Kardia Arniou Stin Schara Kai Marathosalata. A little too long to put in the title.
Recipe source: Michael Psilaktis's book, How to Roast a Lamb: New Greek Classic Cooking. Page 146.

greek heart.jpg

  • 4 large lamb hearts
  • 1 large bulb fennel (very cold), shaved crosswise on a mandoline or sliced paper-thin
  • 1/2 small red onion (very cold), shaved on a mandoline or sliced paper thin
  • 2 tablespoons finely snipped chives
  • 8 leaves fresh mint, slivered
  • 2 tablespoons roughly chopped dill
  • 2 tablespoons plus 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for brushing
  • Kosher salt and cracked black pepper
  • 1/4 cup Greek yogurt, drained
If your butcher has not already done so, first butterfly and trim the lamb hearts: trim off the top of each heart at the wider end, crosswise, to expose the ventricles. Trim off any white fat, and go inside each of the ventricles, to trim any veins, leaving just the deep red muscle. Turn the cut sides down and trim downward to remove any fat from the outside (don't be obsessive about this). Cut through the ventricles close to the dividing piece, and open out like a book to butterfly. From each heart you should have one small piece (from the smaller ventricle), and two bigger pieces (from the larger ventricle).

In a large bowl, combine the fennel, red onion, chives, mint and dill. Season generously with kosher salt and pepper, toss well with clean hands, and reserve.
Whisk together yogurt and two tablespoons lemon juice; season to taste.

Preheat a charcoal or gas grill, or ridged cast iron grill pan, until hot. Paint both sides of the pieces of lamb heart with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Grill the lamb hearts for about one minute on each side, only until just firm and char marked. Let rest for 2 to 3 minutes.

Slice the hearts about 1/4 inch thick on the diagonal; combine with the fennel salad, dress with the 1/4 cup lemon juice and the 1/4 cup olive oil. Toss well, season to taste. Put a spoonful of the yogurt mixture on each plate. Top with the salad.

NOTES: This recipe is made for the Cookbook Challenge #5.
I cut everything down one quarter - I only had one lamb heart!
I used my George Foreman grill for this.
They didn't specify, so I used whole fat yogurt (tastes better, anyway).
Couldn't find fresh mint. Approximated with dried peppermint (which did say came from Greece).

VERDICT: I enjoyed this very much. The lamb heart will be no more than medium rare - if you overcook it (from past experience) it will be tough. (Another option is that low and slow, but that would be a different recipe).
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