April 5, 2013 Leave your thoughts
What’s not to love about lambs? They’re fuzzy, adorable…
Best of all, if you get the right cut, it can be on your weeknight dinnerplate with realitively little effort.
To achieve a defined flavor, I started the night before with a marinade. We had some deteriorating arugula in the fridge, so I decided to make a pesto.
In the food processor, I blended 2 cups of arugula, 1 large clove of garlic, a large handful (about 1/4 cup) of walnuts, and 1/3 cup of olive oil. This sauce is highly customizable—experiment with using basil or mint in place of the arugula and hazelnuts, pistachios, or macadamia nuts instead of the walnuts.
Then, I poured the pesto into a large ziploc bag with 1/3 cup of orange juice and added a little over 2 pounds of boneless leg of lamb. After sealing it up, I vigorously shook the bag to fully distribute the marinade. I marinated it in the fridge for about 18 hours, but anywhere from 2-24 hours should suffice. (The longer, the better—just don’t exceed a day.)
To cook, I heated the gas grill to about 450 degrees and put the lamb in the center. 7 minutes later, I flipped it over and let it cook for an additional 7 minutes. Ideally, you want to get the lamb to 125 degrees for somewhere between rare and medium rare.
Before eating, I covered the lamb with some tinfoil for about 10 minutes, then thinly sliced it to serve.
To go with our farmyard friend, I made an unusually interesting eggplant medley.
First, I heated a large skillet dry over medium-high heat and charred two eggplants on all sides until nearly blackened, about 20 minutes total.
While the eggplants cooled on a cutting board, I melted 1 tablespoon of organic refined coconut oil in the same skillet, then sauteed 1 medium red onion and 1 large red bell pepper with 1 large clove of crushed garlic.
Once the veggies were tender and beginning to brown, I poured them into a large bowl to cool.
Don’t worry, the eggplant was not forgotten! When it was near room temperature, I peeled off the charred skin and roughly chopped it into 1/2-inch-ish chunks. I added it to the onion, pepper, and garlic in the bowl and mixed it all up with a wooden spoon.
My favorite part was definitely the embellishments. To the bowl, I added 1 large handful of chopped walnuts (again, about 1/4 cup), the juice of one lemon, 1/4 cup olive oil, 3 tablespoons of pomegranate seeds, 1/3 cup roughly chopped parsley, and a big pinch of paprika and cumin. I seasoned with salt and pepper to taste.
And there you have it: a simple, tasty Middle-Eastern inspired dinner to impress your family, friends, and/or yourself! If you eat dairy, I highly recommend spooning some good quality yogurt onto your plate to dip everything in.
So, what do you like to marinate your meats in? Leave me a comment and let me know!