Pan-frying is the technique of cooking thin cuts of lamb in a small quantity of hot fat in an uncovered pan. This is considered a 'dry heat' method because fat does not contain water. Sautéing differs from frying in that less fat is used. It is actually the same process as searing except that sautéing completely cooks the meat and searing is simply a means to brown the meat so that the cooking process can be completed with another method. It is important that the meat surface is dry when it is placed into the pan so that it browns rather than steams, and that the pan and cooking fat are both hot enough to brown the meat quickly. The pan should not be crowded; cook in small batches if necessary. Choose fat that doesn't burn at high temperatures. Many cooks prefer to use heart-healthy oils such as canola or olive oil. Both work well for sautéing. Butter may be used for the rich flavor it provides, but it should not be used alone because it will burn easily. Use butter in combination with oil. Lamb for sautéing should be tender and not more than an inch thick. Lamb chops and liver are good choices for sautéing. Tougher cuts from the shoulder should be braised or roasted.

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