I've been a little "dis-connected" this past week and so this post is coming a few days late. I have learned however, that when I spend less time online, I am much... MUCH more efficient. Although I'm on mat leave right now - between the girls, my blog (which I love love love writing!), book parties (if you didn't know, I recently became an Usborne books consultant... something else I'm really enjoying!) and whatever else (...) I swear I am busier than when I was working. Is it having 2 kids? Do I just have less energy? Is this a sign that I'm aging...?
This post is supposed to be about food isn't it? Not how efficient I am... or my lack of energy. Focus Andrea... focus!
So the lamb has finally arrived. 80 lbs of a variety of different cuts of lamb has been added to the deep freeze and I was pretty anxious to start trying recipes with the lamb as it's a meat that I've only ever bought pre-marinated and ready to BBQ. The next few weeks will be a learning process as I start to integrate the lamb into our regular meals.
For supper tonight we tried "Tranches de Gigot d'Agneau au Romarin" (Rosemary sliced leg of lamb doesn't seem like a proper translation but let's go with that!). My very first and most important comment on our dinner experience is that I am once again THRILLED with the meat bought from a nearby farm. Maybe it's partly in my head... but I swear it tastes better than store bought meat. We're already convinced that we'll buy our beef the same way again. And we'll wait and see how much we enjoy the lamb before making any decisions about buying another one (besides - we seriously have NO freezer space left right now).
The lamb we had for dinner was excellent... in texture, in flavour... yummm. I'm sure it would convert those who think they don't like lamb. My recipe (see below) came from an IGA recipe card - an "aide-gourmet" - and was very simple and easy to execute. The only thing that required extra time was making sure that I had the meat in the marinade 2 hours before dinner.
The instructions suggested serving the lamb with brown rice and Brussels sprouts. I opted for a rice medley and asparagus. So about 30 minutes before dinner, I prepared my rice (I use 1/2 water and 1/2 chicken stock to give it more flavour) and asparagus (which I almost always cook in the oven on a cookie sheet, drizzled with olive oil and sprinkled with salt, at 400 for 5-10 minutes). Brandon helped by cooking the lamb on the BBQ.
The end result? I liked it. Brandon liked it. Layla liked it (the meat... we had a harder time convincing her to eat her vegetables). The recipe is a keeper and one I'll be doing again for sure. The mix of Dijon, maple, garlic and rosemary was very tasty!
We ended our dinner by sharing a bowl of plump Mexican picked raspberries. Layla enjoys putting them on the end of her fingers and eating them one at a time. She also loves it if you put a raspberry on the end of your finger and "kiss" one of her raspberry fingers with your own. Of course... Brandon and I join her for fun and then exchange a grin at the things we now do because we have kids. (As Layla gets older, these "grins" are occurring more and more often... when we find ourselves singing silly songs, doing silly dances, making animals out of pipe cleaners...).
Layla's RASPBERRY fingertips
What can I say? I love dinner time with my family. I love that we can be silly together. I am really enjoying this time in my life...
The recipe for Rosemary Sliced Leg of Lamb
- ½ cup apple juice
- ¼ cup oil
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup
- ¼ cup
- 3 cloves of garlic (finely chopped)
- 3 tablespoons fresh rosemary (coarsely chopped)
- 2 slices of leg of lam (about 1 in. thick)
- In a small bowl, mix apple juice, oil, maple syrup, mustard, garlic and rosemary/ Place slices of lamb in a freezer bag (or Tupperware container); add marinade and close tightly. Leave in fridge for about 2 hours.
- Preheat BBQ. Grill lamb about 6 minutes per side (until the inside is just pink). Remove it from the flame and cut into the appropriate sized portions.