Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Juicy Lamb Two-Ways Recipe

 

This restaurant favorite is a quick and easy to make at home. Neck of lamb is slowly braised with red wine, shallots, and mushrooms, then served with additional slices of rare roast lamb.

lamb-two-ways-recipe

A sheep in its first year is called a lamb; and its meat is also called lamb. The meat of a lamb is taken from the animal between one month and one year old, with a carcass weight of between 5.5 and 30 kilograms (12 and 65 lbs). This meat generally is more tender than that from older sheep and appears more often on tables in some Western countries.

Mutton on the other hand are usually aged two or older. Mutton is often derived from culled breeding rams and ewes, and is sold at a low return or bred specifically for the specialty market. Hogget and mutton have a stronger flavor than lamb because they contain a higher concentration of species-characteristic fatty acids and are preferred by some people. Mutton and hogget also tend to be tougher than lamb (because of connective tissue maturation) and are therefore better suited to casserole-style cooking, as in Lancashire hotpot, for example.

Lamb is often sorted into three kinds of meat: forequarter, loin, and hindquarter. The forequarter includes the neck, shoulder, front legs, and the ribs up to the shoulder blade. The hindquarter includes the rear legs and hip. The loin includes the ribs between the two.

Lamb consumption has fallen in the United States over recent decades, although its reputation as a prime meat with unique qualities and unrivalled culinary opportunities has never been questioned. Prices remain high, making lamb a considered choice for festive celebrations, rather than an everyday meat. However, since lamb and mutton are common in Middle Eastern cuisines, much of the consumer demand comes from these specific communities.

Lamb organ meats are a delicacy in the United Kingdom and across Europe. Scottish haggis is one of the most famous dishes. The organ meats are ground with oatmeal, suet, onion, and herbs, then stuffed into a lamb or ox intestine and boiled. The dish is honored with a bagpipe toast during the national festival of Burns Night and served with parsnips and potatoes.

How to Cook Lamb

Cheaper cuts of lamb are a great choice for slow stews, homely pot-roasts, and braises. Select these cuts not just for traditional dishes, but for spicy tagines and curries, served with fluffy rice or flatbreads.

Slow cooking tenderizes firm or tough cuts and allows seasoned liquid to mingle with the meat. Braising and pot-roasting are best for seared whole cuts, while stewing is beneficial to smaller pieces of lamb. Braising usually requires that the level of liquid is no more than halfway up the side of the meat. This prevents the meat from drying out and provides enough liquid heat to break down the connective tissue and tougher flesh. As an extension of this technique, stewing fully immerses the meat in liquid, letting the moist heat permeate the flesh. All slow-cooked lamb is served well-done.

Age and Flavor of Lamb

Spring lamb refers to those animals born in winter and slaughtered before five months. This meat is favored for its tenderness—and is the most expensive you can buy. Lamb slaughtered in the fall comes from older animals—it has a deep pink color and flavor and firmer fat. The darker the color, the older the animal.

Baby lamb meat is pale pink, while Spring lamb is pinkish-red, and mutton is a deep shade of burgundy.

Across the world, most lamb is raised on pasture, but in the U.S., much is reared intensively. Grain-fed American lamb has a mild flavor, contains a high percentage of fat, and is butchered into larger-than-average cuts. British, Australian, and New Zealand lamb is mainly grass-fed and smaller in size.

According to some enthusiasts of pasture-only lamb, grain-finished lamb has excess quantities of gristly fat. Although there is more meat on the bone, the taste does not accept strong seasonings, and the meat texture is flaccid. The fat on grass-fed lamb is soft, the meat is dense, with a deeper flavor.


Lamb Two-Ways Recipe

Serves 6–8


INGREDIENTS:

2- 1/4 pounds (1 kg) cubed neck filet or shoulder meat
salt and black pepper
1/2 cup (60 g) all-purpose flour
4 tablespoons (60 ml) vegetable oil
2 cups (475 ml) pinot noir red wine
7 ounces (200 g) thick-cut smoked bacon, cut into strips (lardons)
20 small shallots, peeled
20 button mushrooms
1 sprig rosemary
6 sprigs thyme
2 tablespoons (30 g) red currant jelly
1- 1/4 pounds (680 g) lamb leg or rump
1–2 tablespoons (15–30 g) gravy browning or gravy granules, optional

To serve
dauphinoise potatoes and green beans


COOKING PROCEDURE:

1) Season the cubed lamb meat, then toss in half of the flour.

2) Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a skillet. When the pan is smoking hot, add the lamb in batches, and fry until golden all over. Set aside.

3) Use 1/2 cup (120 ml) of the wine to deglaze the pan and add the liquid to the meat. Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in the skillet. Add bacon and fry until golden. Set aside in a bowl.

4) Sauté the shallots and mushrooms in another tablespoon of oil until soft. Stir in 1/4 cup (60 ml) of the wine, then add the cooked vegetables to the bacon.

5) Put the cubed lamb meat, remaining wine, and herbs into a large pot. Add enough water to cover the meat. Simmer very gently for 1- 1/2 hours, regularly skimming and reserving the fat. Add extra water if necessary to keep the meat moist.

6) Add the bacon and vegetables to the pot. Cook gently for 45–60 minutes, skimming regularly, until the meat is tender. Strain the meat and vegetables and set aside.

7) Heat 1 tablespoon reserved lamb fat in a pan. Stir in remaining 1 tablespoon flour to make a roux. Whisk in the strained liquid until smooth, then add the red currant jelly. Heat, whisking, until thickened. Season, then add reserved meat and vegetables.

8) For the roast lamb, preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C). Season the lamb leg or rump, then seal in a hot skillet, in the remaining 1 tablespoon oil, for 5 minutes, or until browned. Transfer to a roasting pan. Roast for 12 minutes, then allow the meat to rest, covered, for 5 minutes.

9) Meanwhile, reheat the braised lamb. Use the gravy browning or granules to thicken and darken the cooking juices, if desired, following the packet instructions.

10) To serve, carve the roast lamb and serve with the braised lamb, potatoes, and beans.


Quick Tip

Check the roast lamb towards the end of the roasting time. It should feel fairly firm when squeezed for medium-rare; if it is squishy it will be too rare, while hard or shrunken indicates well-done.

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Lamb Meat Calorie Counter:

Nutrition summary:

Calories: 37
Fat: 2.54g
Carbohydrate: 0g
Protein: 3.35g

There are 37 calories in 1 thin slice of Lamb Roast.
Calorie breakdown: 63% fat, 0% carbohydrate, 37% protein.

Common Serving Sizes:
Serving Size
Calories
1 thin slice (approx 3" dia x 1/8")
37
1 oz, with bone (yield after cooking, bone removed)
45
1 cubic inch boneless
45
1 oz boneless (yield after cooking)
53
1 oz, with bone (yield after bone removed)
56
1 medium slice (approx 3" dia x 1/4")
74
1 oz boneless
75
1 thick slice (approx 3" dia x 3/8")
112
100 g
266
1 cup diced
356



Watch the 3-minute video (it's like poetry in motion): Lamb 2 Ways Recipe by David Felton, Executive Chef at 90 Acres



Corn chowder is Wyatt Earp favorite food. Try it for yourself, please get the recipe here... Corn Chowder with Bacon Original Recipe from The Palace Restaurant and Saloon at Prescott, Arizona

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