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Rosa Matto’s Spring Lamb Salad


Adelaide chef Rosa Matto’s spring lamb recipe – featuring new-season asparagus and beans and accompanied by a pea and garlic salsa – is the perfect way to usher in the warmer weather.

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“Spring lamb is very tender and has a deliciously mild flavour,” she says. “Look for firm, slightly pink meat with a velvety texture.”

Matto, who is resident chef of Channel 7’s SA Life, host of WOMADelaide’s Taste the World event, and an ambassador for the recently launched Explore Prospect – Food and Art Traila map and guide featuring profiles on the area’s various restaurants, pubs, cafes and bakeries.

Spring Lamb Salad

Serves 8


250g broad beans (podded weight, 400g total)
250g flat green beans, trimmed
16 spears asparagus, trimmed
2 oranges zested and juiced
2 oranges peeled and segmented
6 tbsp olive oil
2 small red chillies, seeded and finely sliced
1 tsp grainy mustard
Small pinch of sugar to taste
Salt and pepper
300g lamb tenderloin, trimmed of sinew
6 small slices pancetta, crisped in the oven
Small bunch chives, cut into 3cm lengths
1 tbsp olive oil, extra
2 red onions, finely sliced
1 tbsp basil, cut into strips

Pea & Garlic Salsa

1 cup peas, cooked and drained
1 clove garlic, crushed
6 mint leaves, shredded
Salt and pepper to taste
Olive oil as needed


Blanch podded broad beans in boiling salted water until tender; drain and refresh. Peel. Blanch flat green beans in boiling salted water until tender, drain and refresh. Add to broad beans.

Blanch asparagus in boiling salted water until just tender (about 1-2 minutes); drain and refresh. Add to broad beans and flat beans, along with orange segments.

To make dressing, whisk together olive oil, orange juice and zest, chillies, mustard and sugar. Season with salt and pepper.

Rub lamb tenderloin with oil and season with salt and pepper. Grill to your liking on a very hot grill pan. Remove from heat and allow to rest for 10 minutes before slicing across the diagonal.

Place broad beans, green beans, orange segments and lamb (with any juices from the resting period) into a serving bowl.

Add sliced onion and basil and toss very gently together with the dressing to coat all ingredients.

Combine all salsa ingredients with a potato masher to achieve a chunky texture.

To serve: Top salad with a spoonful of pea salsa, then crumble pancetta and scatter with chives.

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