It's hard for me to understand people disliking lamb and makes me a little sad. I "grew up on NZ beef and lamb" (quote from a childhood advert) and love it. Sadly lamb became too expensive here for a while, but now it is back on the menu at my place at least once a week.
Roast lamb is so easy, best done reasonably slowly until tender but fully cooked (I disagree with those who want it left pink). Leftovers minced and turned into shepherds pie, or sliced onto a lettuce salad.
Lamb chops can be done in the slow cooker with an apple and onion and perhaps a little mint sauce, until so tender they fall off the bone. Ovengrilled lamb chops come out completely differently, but I think I love them even more as the skin goes a little crispy. I place them on a rack and collect the dripping in a tray beneath, that then is a wonderful spread or fat for cooking in (as a child I would have it on bread or toast with salt, now maybe I fry mushrooms or courgettes in it).
The bones make amazing broth for vege soup, or you can use a knuckle bone with the meat still on for a meat and vege soup.
Lamb curry seems a bit of a waste to me as it hides the taste, but perhaps would be a good intro dish for someone trying to get used to it.
With all apologies to Annieh, I understand perfectly. For years the only lamb I had ever been served was at horrid Easter buffets, with an off-putting flavor at best. Luckily, a friend of mine married a Greek man, and I have had a lamb re-discovery! It's now probably my very favorite meat. Quality sourced meat prepared simply, it can't be beat. (Just went to the best restaurant in the area recently with friends, and when the waitress announced the lamb special, three of us picked our jaws off the floor - there wasn't much talk from us, either!)
Originally Posted by EagleRiverDee
Rack of lamb is just wonderful, a nice clean tasting meat, bursting with grass-fed goodness! Just the perfect balance of lean pink meat to fatty flavor-bombs. I'll often cut the rack into individual ribs, marinate briefly in olive oil, garlic, rosemary, S&P, and a tiny tiny bit of molasses (!) for caramelization. Wipe the ribs dry, plunk them in a pan heated medium-high with a tiny bit of olive oil just before the ribs go down... a couple of minutes per side, medium rare perfection.
Take a whole leg of lamb and use the same marinade (or sub oregano), sans the molasses, and grill low and slow with a nice wood smoke like hickory. Yum, and yum.
Good lamb literally makes me so happy it causes the hair on the back of my neck to stand up. DEFINITELY worth trying again if you, like most Americans, have a bad opinion or just never eat it. In fact, I think it's what's for dinner!
Annieh: I adore lamb in Indian dishes (rogan josh, lamb korma). Curry may overwhelm it, but lamb can hold its own to spice.
Really easy, but always a hit...blanched green beans with kosher salt and dill weed. Only use fresh green beans.
Telling you - people who grow up eating lamb know how to make it deliciously. Also agreed, regarding quality-sourced meat. Of any kind. We go to our friendly neighborhood Middle Eastern store to buy it. They source from a local farm. We order lamb chops (but soon I think we'll be eating enough to justify shoulders) and just braise the hell out of them. I used to think I preferred most meat rare, but I think I can say that I prefer lamb cooked this way now. My beef, however, should remain raw or close to it.
Originally Posted by Finnegans Wake
Regarding curry, it's all in the amount you use. If you add just a bit, along with onions and a squeeze of lime at the end, the lamb flavor still shines through. I've been super intrigued by Middle Eastern cooking lately, and one of the pearls of wisdom I've heard from a lot of natives is, whatever the spice, don't use so much as to completely overwhelm the flavor of the meat. I don't think many Americans have a ton of experience using it, so we tend to be heavy-handed, myself included.
Last edited by vintageeats; 02-07-2013 at 01:52 PM.
This sounds great! I've always had success with blanched green beans + almonds sauteed in a TON of butter. My stepbrother, who is an extremely picky eater, wolfed these down when I made them.
Originally Posted by JennGlob
You are all wonderful people, thanks! I will let you know what I go for
These primal canapes always please:
1. Prosciutto (without preservatives) cups (press slices of prosciutto into a greased mini muffin tine and bake) filled with (1) chopped melon and a wee bit of basil or (2) chopped pear and pecorino with a drizzle of honey.
2. Cucumber slices or cucumber "bowls" (slice about a 3/4-1" thick and remove the center with a melon baller) filled with dilled greek yogurt and preservative-free cured salmon
3. Parmesan crisps topped with beef tartare and homeade garlic aioli
For the main:
1. Braised shortribs over pureed cauliflower with or without gorgonzola (brussels sprouts on the side)
2. Spanish style seafood skillet saute (tomatoes, garlic, onions, EVOO)
3. Creamy fish and seafood stew (something like this: Seafood Stew with Fennel and Thyme Recipe at Epicurious.com)
Great ideas, marymac.
Love that cuke cup... smoked salmon, yummmmm.
Oh, and for the record, I adore braised short ribs - so rich and wonderful and easy to make.