Showing posts with label Lamb. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Lamb. Show all posts

Saturday, September 10, 2016

Spring Lamb Sliders – A Shoulder to Bite On

You could roast an expensive leg of lamb for Easter, which would be lovely, but why not consider the lesser known, and just as delicious shoulder roast? This underrated cut is less expensive, very flavorful, and much less stressful.

We usually prepare the leg medium-rare to medium for maximum enjoyment, which requires a little more finesse than a shoulder roast, which we’re going to cook long and slow, until very tender. As long as you let the meat braise until it's falling off the bone, there's no way this isn't going to be great.

Obviously, we’re talking about a completely different texture than roasted lamb, but if you like things like shredded beef, and pulled pork, you will be down with this. As I mentioned in the video, I wanted you to focus on the super easy technique, and not necessarily the ingredients I used.

Honey, vinegar, and mint are classic with lamb, but any other sweet/sour approach should work nicely. You could even cheat, and use your favorite barbecue sauce (you know my favorite), which would be perfect with this rich, succulent cut, as well. I hope you give this a try soon. Enjoy!

Ingredients for 4 large portions (about 3 sliders per person):
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
3 1/2 pound bone-in lamb shoulder roast
salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 onion, cut in large dice
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup chicken broth
1/2 cup cider vinegar
1/4 cup honey
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
2 tablespoons freshly sliced mint

- 325 F. for 2 1/2 to 3 hours, or until very tender
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Friday, September 9, 2016

Roasted Rack of Lamb with Strawberry Mint Sauce – Here’s to a Brighter Future

Like many Americans my age, I was raised with a jar of mint jelly in the fridge, and it never, ever, came out unless there was lamb around. In fact, if someone caught you making a PB&J with mint jelly back then, it was straight to the insane asylum. Nope, mint jelly was to be served only with lamb – and lamb only with mint jelly.

We’ve come a long way since then, and now, anything goes. Except for peanut butter and mint jelly sandwiches. That’s still considered crazy. But as far as mint sauces go, I love experimenting with new ideas, especially around Easter time, and I really liked how this came out.

As I mention, next time we’ll add our mint right before we serve, so to preserve that bright green color, but besides that, I really enjoyed the combination. Once it was properly seasoned, that is. I added more of everything; lemon juice, salt, cayenne, and mint, before it was just right. The ingredient amounts below have been properly adjusted.

Regarding the cooking method: I usually sear my racks in a very hot frying pan, then add the mustard/crumb mixture, and roast until we reach 125 F., internal temp. This time I tried an alternative method, where you sear it in a hot oven, then add the crumbs, and continue roasting until done. Which is a better method for the home cook? Probably the first one.

The good news is; if you watch any of our older rack of lamb videos, you see this method in all its glory. In fact, this “Pistachio Crusted Rack of Lamb” would not only show you our preferred technique, but would also go amazingly well with this sauce. I really hope you give it a try soon. Enjoy!

Ingredients for 2 large or 4 smaller portions:
1 whole (8 bone) rack of lamb seasoned very generously with salt, freshly ground black pepper, and cayenne
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1 tablespoons finely minced green onions
1/4 cup fine plain bread crumbs
2 tablespoons melted butter
1/4 teaspoon salt

For the *sauce:
2 cups fresh strawberries
zest of one lemon
juice from 2 lemons
1/4 cup water
2 tablespoons honey
1/4 cup freshly sliced mint leaves (add right before you serve!)
salt and cayenne pepper to taste

* Only do final seasoning when the sauce has cooled. When tasting the sauce, keep in mind it’s going to be used as a condiment, and not eaten plain, which means it needs to be very well-seasoned. This is why it’s better to taste on a cracker or piece of bread, instead of off the spoon. Other great additions to this sauce are things like balsamic vinegar, hot/sweet peppers, cracked black pepper, as well as other “sweet” herbs, like tarragon and basil.
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