Lets get it started on The Failed Palate! A Mediterranean lamb fusion dish that tasted incredible!
Welcome to the first blog everyone. I'm Greg, and I created "The Failed Palate", because I wanted a place where I could talk food, food preparation, differing cuisines, cocktails and pretty much anything within the realm. The main focus here will be making food at home and how I feel it came out. These are all things that I believe most of us can learn to do when we have a little time in the kitchen. You'll also be able to see the recipes I used and a look inside my small kitchen in my apartment. There is going to be successes, failures, the tools I use(and I don't have all that fancy stuff you see on other blogs and on tv), and all the in between. My goal is to do one dish a week, put up the blog with the recipe and sometimes throw a video up as well. So let's sit down and enjoy some amazing home cooked cuisine.
We are gonna start out with a little secret here...I have very very little experience cooking lamb! In my past I always was working Japanese restaurants, Mexican restaurants, or American restaurants. For a short while when I lived in South Lake Tahoe way back in the day I worked in a French place but I literally only lasted there like one month before the chef took me aside one night and told me I wasn't experienced enough to be in his kitchen unless I strictly wanted to be a prep cook during the day time. Needless to say, I walked out late mid shift. I may or may not have told him to "fuck off," It was so long ago now that I can't remember. My memory is fuzzy now because back then I used to smoke a whole lot of ganga. A WHOLE LOT!
My original point being I may have cooked lamb from scratch maybe two or three times in my entire life and that would of been for strictly sauteing in say a stir fry cause I got it cheap or in a stew. The saving grace of this meal is that I also made a chimichurri to drizzle over the top of it which would if worse came to worse, cover up whatever mistake I made i.e being over cooked, burnt, or dry. The other interesting thing about this dish is the way it is cooked. You literally throw it in a baking pan with water, cover it with aluminum foil and put the oven at 500 degrees for 20 or so minutes just to start it off. I was seeing a recipe for disaster in the making but fortunately, it didn't turn out this way at all.
One thing I do a lot when I am cooking is figuring out the protein or main dish I want to make and then have trouble figuring out what to serve with it. You see, about a week ago I was watching iron chef and saw the chef cooking with the secret ingredient which was lamb. For some reason, I got all excited about wanted to make a lamb dish with say mint jelly or something. I don't know what came over me, but I was dead set on have lamb in some sort of way. Then, I got to thinking, "what do you serve with lamb?" This past week I had had potatoes twice, chard, and brussel sprouts, so what did I want with this lamb dish I'm gonna try and cook up. Then it hit me, I'll be lazy on the side dish and just blanch some asparagus and drizzle the chimichurri over it as well. I guess I should say, I absolutely love garlic, mint, cilantro and tart vinegary things. So I made it easy on myself and more so focused on the lamb.
Another thing I love to serve with dinner for a more balanced meal is a salad of some sort. I'm all for a basic red leaf lettuce salad with an assortment of other flavorful vegetables like bell pepper, red onion, and carrots with some sort of oil and vinegar dressing but wanted something that was influenced by the Mediterranean or Middle eastern regions of the world. So I just googled up some salad recipes from that area and realized that a cucumber and tomato salad would fit in nicely the other dishes. It also gave me an excuse to use more garlic, mint, and cilantro. That's a win win right there!
In itself, this was a very fun dish to do! The Lebanese style lamb was amazingly good. The recipe calls for all sorts of different spices and ones I don't use in my own everyday cooking which made it really jump out. Once I pulled the lamb out of the oven and added the chimichurri sauce to it, it was literally to die for. I had so many flavors just bouncing around my palate from tart to savory. I really couldn't believe how good it came out. The blanched asparagus with chimichurri and the cucumber and tomato salad also jumped out and went really well with the spiced lamb.
Overall, I think this was a great start. Wonderful dish that both my girlfriend and I loved. Definitely recommend trying it out. It's really not that hard make any of these things and only took about an hour an a half from start to finish. Till next week when we wreck the palate again! Stay safe and eat great!
6-8 cloves of garlic
1/2 Cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 Cup mint leaves (remove from stems)
1/2 Cup cilantro leaves (remove from stems)
4 Tbsp white wine vinegar
1/4 t. red chili pepper
1/4 t. sea salt
1/4 t. fresh ground black pepper
1. 3/4 teaspoon fennel seeds crushed
2. 3/4 teaspoon ground cumin
3. 3/4 teaspoon ground coriander
4. 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
5. 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
6. 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
7. 1 teaspoon fresh rosemary
8. 1/2 lemon
9. 2 6-8 oz lamb loin chops
10. Salt and pepper (I go light on salt always)
1 bundle of asparagus
Cucumber and Tomato Salad
2-3 tomatoes large dice (any type of tomato will do)
1 lage cucumber deseeded and diced (English cucumber is ok too)
2 cloves garlic minced
1 Tbsp of mint chiffonade
1 Tbsp of cilantro chiffonade
1.5 Tbsp of lemon juice
3 Tbsp of rice vinegar
leaf of butter leaf lettuce
Salt and pepper to taste
Place peeled garlic and olive oil in food processor or blender and pulse until garlic is fine chopped. Add mint, cilantro and white wine vinegar and pulse until you have a nice, creamy puree. Add red chili pepper, salt and pepper. Pulse and taste to check spices, adding more if needed.
Remember this is a cool sauce that doesn't get cooked.
In a medium bowl lightly stir tomato, cucumber, vinegar, mint, cilantro, rice vinegar, lemon juice, salt, pepper and garlic.
Preheat the oven to 500 degrees and place lamb chops in baking tray once they you have applied the rub to them.
Add about 1/4 inch of water in the baking dish and cover with aluminum foil. Cook for 25 minutes. Remember for the sake of this recipe, each chop should be about 1 1/2-inch thick. Then reduce heat to 350 for another 45 minutes.
In a big pot add water and salt and get to rolling boil. Chop off ends of the broccoli and cook for 3 minutes. While cooking fill a big bowl with water with some ice in it so the the broccoli can cool very quickly
In a frying pan, add some butter and saute the broccoli for about 2 minutes just to reheat it and give it a rich texture. Remove it from heat and plate it and add the chimichurri.
Plate it all up and enjoy!