SPICED LAMB CHOPS
Mmmm – More Lamb!
I love lamb – I think it is probably my favourite meat. It stands up to all kinds of robust flavouring, and yet is delicious and flavoursome enough to be enjoyed simply grilled, fried or roasted. Most of the time when we feel the need for a pile of lamb chops I just brush them with a little mix of wholegrain mustard and runny honey and grill them quickly, to serve with mash and greens.
But it was too summery for that treatment last week so I decided to veer toward the Mediterranean again and do something a little bit spicier. All very simple – just rub them with a mixture of spices, let them marinate for a couple of hours and grill.
Rub/marinade for 6 lamb chops
1 tblsp ground cumin
1 tblsp smoked paprika (hot or sweet, whichever you prefer)
1 tblsp Ras-El-Hanout – the yellow one with lots of fennel in is nice for this
Good couple of grinds of black pepper
Mix spices together, add a glug of olive oil, and rub into the chops, getting into all the nooks and crannies. Leave them in the fridge for at least an hour. When ready to cook crank your grill up nice and hot and grill for five minutes a side, or until done to your likeness. They will also barbecue well but I don’t have a garden!
I served them with couscous. For two people put 100g of couscous in a measuring jug and put the same amount of hot water in – you can also use chicken stock or vegetable stock if you wish. Once the couscous has absorbed the liquid turn it into a large bowl, let it cool a little, and then stir in a handful of finely chopped cucumber, the same of tomatoes, a big bunch of chopped mint, season then dress with lemon juice and olive oil – not too much, you don’t want it to go soggy, just to glisten a little.
I also coated some sliced aubergines in dry polenta and shallow fried in olive oil. The polenta adds a nice crunch to the otherwise voluptuous aubergine! Then all you need is a spoonful of creamy yoghurt and some harissa on the side. Lovely summer food - let's hope the weather holds!