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Burn Your Fingers with Lamb Chops Scottadito

Our Editor-in-Chief shares his method for preparing the Roman classic Lamb Chops Scottadito which is perfect for grilling season.

Lamb Chops Scottadito with Fagioli all'Uccelletto.

Lamb Chops Scottadito with Fagioli all’Uccelletto.

As the warm weather settles in, and outdoor cooking and dining are once again in vogue, I turn to my favorite meal that compliments the grill. OK, I make Lamb Chops Scottadito off-season, indoors on a grill pan, but these little “lollichops” are best hot off a flaming contraption of choice.

Scottadito translates to “burn the finger,” and this is the fun part, as handling the hot rib bones of the just-cooked lamb chops, to eat by hand, makes for a worthwhile challenge that is rewarded with the most flavorful of bites. Gnawing the rib meat off the bones is an added bonus.

This dish is most recognized as having Roman origins, but you can find it throughout the central peninsula. It captures the Italian essence of excellence in the simplicity found in very few, high-quality ingredients. Clearly here, the ingredient of most importance is the lamb.

In the U.S., I prefer the sustainably raised lamb from western states, particularly that of Superior Farms. That said, ask your butcher for their finest rack of lamb, and—while you are at it—ask them to trim the fat and cut the rack into individual chops.

However you get there, once at the grill, there is very little work to be done and only the need for a few key, readily-available ingredients to enhance the flavor of the delectable meat that is so fun to eat.

Whether indoors or out, this pairs perfectly with Fagioli all’Uccelletto, or Tuscan baked beans.

So, get in there and don’t burn your fingers (too bad)!

Buon Appetito!

Lamb Chops Scottadito

Lamb Chops Scottadito

Recipe by Andrew Cotto
0.0 from 0 votes


Prep time


Cooking time




  • 2 2 racks of lamb, trimmed of excess fat, cut into individual chops.

  • Salt & pepper to taste

  • A little olive oil for the heat surface

  • 1/4 cup 1/4 Rosemary, minced

  • 2 2 lemons, quartered


  • Season the chops on both sides with salt & pepper 15 minutes before cooking.
  • Heat an outdoor grill or grill pan to medium-high.
  • Lightly coat the grilling surface with olive oil.
  • Sear the chops on each side for 2-3 minutes.
  • Plate artfully on a platter with criss-crossed bones (or just pile them on there).
  • Squeeze fresh lemon on top.
  • Sprinkle lightly with salt (don’t overdo it) and all of the rosemary.
  • Serve immediately!

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