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Thursday, December 27, 2007
Braised Moroccan Lamb
551PM - The lamb is in the oven, twenty minutes into the braise (yes, I'm rather fond of the braise thankyouverymuch), and here's how I got there...
First, I whipped up a spice mix based on this recipe's guidelines. It features:
Two parts cinnamon
Two parts coriander
One part salt
One part cumin
One part white pepper (my pepper grinder is painfully slow to crush the amount I needed, so I doubled the black pepper requirement to use white)
Half part nutmeg (ground from whole - that was fun)
I then rubbed the shanks with the spices...
...and seared them in half olive, half argan oil.
They got all brown and tasty looking (not to mention fantastic smelling).
Sweet bleeding Mexican Jesus candle, would you look at that? Then, I added a mirepoix (fancypants way of saying "diced onion, carrot and celery in roughly equal amounts) to the oil and started sauteeing it. (Bonus - another angle of the browned lamb shanks in this photo)
Once the mirepoix had a few minutes in the oil, I added about two tablespoons of tomato paste and mixed it in.
I got that bubbling, then added two cups of dry white wine (Pinot Grigo, simmering all the alcohol off) and a cup of hot water (Ruhlman says don't use store-bought stock, I'm going to start listening.). I brought it back up to a bubble and added the shanks back in.
I put parchment paper over the shanks, added the lid to the vessel and slid it in the oven at 300 degrees. Turn the shanks every 20 minutes for roughly one hour and twenty minutes of in-oven braising.
Next up - the side dish. Later, though.
700PM - I'm eating
The side is white beans and kale "braised" (I don't know why they call it that when you're doing it in a saute pan with a lid, but whatever) with the argan oil. I got the beans nice and mushy, and it tastes terrific.
As for the lamb? Holy hell is this thing fragrant. It's hard to find the argan oil flavor in there, but the aromatic spices are shining through big time. This tastes fantastic, and I'll be able to reheat a whole shank for dinner tomorrow. Hooray!
Mexican Bleeding Jesus Candle Says...
Watch this space to see the conversion of the blood of the lamb*!
*as well as the shank of the lamb, naturally.
*Update* Mexican Bleeding Jesus Candle says that we're coating the lamb shanks in a Moroccan spice rub, searing in a combo argan/olive oil, then adding a mirepoix, tomato paste and white wine, then braising for a couple hours. Probably going to do kale with white beans on the side. Recipe and pics to come.
So, for xmas, my friend The Doc purchased a bottle of this:
and had it shipped my way, under the theory that the perfect gift for me is something with which I've never cooked before.
Ayup. Argan oil is a Moroccan specialty oil akin to walnut oil or sesame oil, and upon opening the box from Oregon this morning, I knew I had to make a run to get some supplies.
Them's lamb shanks. How fucking good do those look? Here, look closer:
I grabbed nutmeg and coriander, on the idea that I could compliment the nuttiness of the oil with those spices, and I grabbed stuff for a mirepoix and I grabbed lemon and kale and garlic and...
Well shit, look at the photos yourself. I have no idea what I'm going to do yet, but rest assured there will be pictures and blogging coming. The shanks have been salted and are in the refrigerator for a couple hours. I'll be back around later.
Monday, December 24, 2007
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