Tag Archives: lamb

Happy New Year! … Leg of Lamb Roast and Oreo Cheesecake

Sorry for the belated post but I’ve been a bit lazy so I’ve got a bunch of stuff to share.

I made an Oreo cheesecake to go with my simple boneless leg of lamb roast New Year’s dinner.

The slices I cut for my dinner were from the fatty end of the roast and a BIT underdone so the roast, including the slices you see on the plate, went back into the oven for another 15 minutes. (Lesson learned, try the directions ON the package before you get creative.) The lamb looked like the picture below when I ate it.

The much nicer end of the roast

I didn’t have a lot of inspiration for a pretty cheesecake plating so here’s a profile shot.

Most of the cheesecake went into the freezer.

Baked Kibbeh (Kibbeh bil sayneeye)

Kibbeh is a delicious Middle Eastern appetizer, mezze offering or main dish. Served with tzatziki or other yogurt based sauce, few people would pass this by.

I’ve made the individual stuffed version but it’s fiddly to make and then you have to shallow or preferably, deep fry, the football shaped kibbeh.  I chose to make this kibbeh in a pie plate, but you can also make it in a 9×13 inch baking dish and cut them into diamond shapes.

My first attempt used only beef but a combination of half beef and half lamb is even tastier. You can use the same recipes for this version except bake for 40-45 min in a preheated 350 deg F oven. I added 2 tsp of the Baharat made below to the filling and 1 tbsp to the shell mixture.

Baharat spices before and after being ground

Turkish Baharat

2 tbsp black pepper
2 tbsp cumin
1 tbsp coriander
1 tbsp dried mint
1 tbsp clove
1 tbsp nutmeg
1 tbsp green cardamom
1 pinch cinnamon

Toast dried, whole spices lightly. Let cool and grind in coffee grinder. Store in dark bottle in the fridge or freezer.

Dessert … Turkish delight (loukum)

Fun Cooking … Roasts/Sides, Puddings, Condiments etc

As my LJ says, “Cooking is Fun … Really”.

You can make big flashy dishes like a rosemary and garlic rubbed boneless lamb shoulder roast ($4.99/lb)  …

… with roast veggies.

Or this bbq sauce glazed peameal bacon (Canadian bacon) roast  ($2.99/lb) …

… with sauteed spinach/pine nuts, baked potatoes/sliced onion and roasted asparagus.

But you can also make simple things like this rich and creamy home made blender mayonnaise without any artificial ingredients, to use in your egg, potato or tuna salads. It’s also a great base for an aioli with the addition of roasted and pureed garlic.

Or, a basic home made pudding like a classic chocolate, which I’ve posted in the past. (I’m reposting the recipe for convenience.) Spike it with rum, bourbon, whiskey or Grand Marnier or Cointreau for a grown up version.

Old Fashioned Chocolate Pudding – serves 4

2 cups milk
3-4 tbsp cornstarch
1/4 cup sugar (can increase from 1/4 to 1/3 cup if desired)
1/4 tsp salt
2 tbsp good quality cocoa
1 tsp vanilla

Scald 1 1/2 cups of milk in a heavy saucepan (look for tiny bubbles around the edge).

Mix together the cornstarch, sugar, salt and cocoa, add the remaining 1/2 cup milk, and stir until well blended.

Stir in the scalded milk and blend well. Pour the mixture back into the saucepan and stir constantly over medium heat until thickened. Let the pudding boil for one minute while stirring briskly. Remove from heat, pour into a bowl and let cool for a few minutes.

Stir in the vanilla, spoon into serving dishes.

And a butterscotch pudding variation.

Butterscotch Pudding Variation – serves 3

1 cup milk
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 tbsp cornstarch
1/8 tsp salt
1 egg yolk
1 tbsp butter, cut into cubes
1/2 tsp vanilla

Scald 3/4 cup milk.

In a saucepan, whisk together brown sugar, cornstarch, salt and egg yolk. Stir in 1/4 cup of cold milk until smooth.

Whisk in the warmed milk, very slowly. Place saucepan over medium heat and cook until thickened. Let the pudding boil for one minute while stirring briskly. Remove from heat, pour into a bowl and let cool for a few minutes.

Whisk in the butter, a cube or two at a time until melted.

Whisk in the vanilla and then spoon into serving dishes.

Even a watermelon lemonade when your seedless watermelon turns out not to be as sweet as you hoped.

And remember that spaghetti meat sauce made with leftover odds and ends like green peppers and sauteed mushrooms? I tossed it with some large pasta shells. You can dress up the dish with grated Romano cheese or down with some leftover sweet and milky home made paneer (Indian farmer’s cheese).

I <3 Onions – Beef Burgers and Lamb Kofta Kebabs

The first barbecue of the year was a successful one. I threw whatever I could find in my freezer on the grill … hamburgers, lamb skewers and a package of Oktoberfest Grill ‘Ems. But first, I had to do a bit of preparing of the ground meat.

I enjoy the taste of onions with my burgers but I don’t care for the texture of raw onions so I usually saute some diced onions and add it to my meat mixtures.

After frying the onions and prepping the meat on Saturday, I was too hungry to wait til the next day to bbq, so I pan-fried a couple of the smaller hamburger patties and threw them into this sesame seed bun. There’s melted cheese between the two and some ‘healthy’ lettuce on the bottom. 🙂

Beef Burger

Cross-section through the burger

Barbecued Hamburgers – Word to the wise … do NOT bbq burgers made with regular hamburger meat! The flames are scary.

Ok, the simplest recipe for a hamburger is just to throw some salt and pepper at ground sirloin or other high quality beef, form it into a patty and throw in on a grill, but some of us have limited budgets, so we buy the lean ground beef at the market  … NOT those ground meat chubs at the grocery chains cause I have SOME standards left. And when I first looked up a ‘recipe’ for a hamburger, it told me to use bread crumbs (soaked in milk for moisture) and an egg for binding. So that’s what I’m posting below. Do whatever you want. It’s your burger.

Basic Hamburger – makes 8 4 oz patties

2 pounds lean ground beef
1 small onion, finely diced and sauteed in 1 1/2 tsp vegetable oil
2 tbsp dried bread crumbs
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 egg, beaten well

Sauteed onions

Combine all ingredients in a large bowl.

Divide into 8 portions and shape into patties. You can do it by hand or by using a handy patty press like this one, complete with instructions in case it’s too high tech for you to figure out on your own. The press holds exactly 4 oz.

I’m cheap frugal so I used food wrap.

Pan fry, grill or barbecue.

Ground Lamb Skewers (and some Grill ‘Ems)

Lamb Kofta Kebabs or Ground Lamb Skewers – makes 8 skewers, serve 2 per person

1 pound ground lamb
zest of 1 lemon
2 tsp dried parsley
1 tsp dried mint
1 1/2 tbsp minced dehydrated onion
scant tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
1 1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp ground coriander

Mix lemon zest, dehydrated onion and all the herbs and spices together. Sprinkle over the ground meat and knead in well.

Cover and refrigerate the meat mixture overnight to allow the flavours to meld.

About 45 minutes before you want to cook the kebabs, soak 8 bamboo skewers in water for at least 30 minutes.

Divide the meat into 8 portions and shape into a ball. With damp hands, insert the skewer into the ball of meat and shape the meat around the skewer into a 2-3 inch sausage shape.

Grill or barbecue the kebabs for about 8-10 minutes over medium heat until golden brown and cooked through, rotating ever few minutes.

Serve 2 kebabs with spicy yogurt sauce (recipe below) drizzled over them.

Spicy yogurt – makes 1 cup

1 cup Greek style yogurt
1 clove garlic, peeled and crushed
1/2 tsp each ground cumin, coriander, and mint
1/4 tsp ground cayenne pepper
1 tsp finely grated lemon zest
1 tsp lemon juice
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper

Combine all ingredients for spicy yogurt and refrigerate until ready to use.