Is it any wonder I let the "cooking" ball drop? I'm not ashamed to say we went for pizza on Thursday night and I made Hubby cook the ubiquitous pasta-and-sauce on Friday night.
However, I finally got my act together and whipped up a bit of a Roast Dinner on cold winter's night!
I got myself a couple of little lamb rump mini-roasts from my new, frugal shopping heaven, Aldi.
I then did what all good cooks do, I Googled "roast lamb rump" recipes and the first one that Chef Google came up with was this beauty from taste.com.au - Roast Lamb Rump with Lemon Potatoes, with Mint Salsa Verde and Yoghurt Sauce. Yum!
So first up, make your Salsa Verde (which is a posh way of saying "green sauce" - but it tastes much nicer if you say "Salsa Verde" than if you say "green sauce").
1 clove garlic (I use minced garlic from a jar!)
6 anchovy fillets (you cannot leave these out, unless you are vegan - but you won't be making lamb roast anyway, so you have to use them. Trust me - they get all mooshed up and you can't tell there's little fishies in there)
1 1/2 tbsp capers
1 cup firmly packed continental parsley leaves
1 1/4 cup mint leaves (I only used about 3/4 of a cup as I'm not a real huge mint fan, but that's OK, because I used anchovies!)
160ml (2/3 cup) extra virgin olive oil
1/2 lemon, zested and juiced
According to the recipe, you need to chop up the anchovies, capers, parsley and mint finely and separately. Whatever! I got my little "whizzer" out and used that to chop up everything finely, except all together:
Then I stirred through the olive oil and lemon zest and juice in a bowl and seasoned with freshly ground black pepper:
Now it's time to make the Yoghurt Sauce:
375g (1 1/3 cup) Greek-style plain yoghurt
1 1/2 tbsp tahini (sesame seed paste)
3 tbsp of lemon juice
1/2 tsp ground cumin
Put all those in a bowl with a pinch of salt and sugar and stir them up. Too easy:
Alrighty - time for the meat! This has a bit of a marinade-y thing:
160ml (2/3 cup) extra virgin olive oil
4 cloves garlic, crushed
2 tsp ground coriander
2 tsp ground cumin
1 1/2 tsp ground sweet paprika (what the hell, I just used 2 tsp of this too!)
1 tsp ground cinnamon
6 x 500g lamb rumps (what? I just read this properly - I just used my two 600g things of rump from Aldi - it was heaps for the 4 of us - we had leftovers - but this recipe feeds 8!!)
|Please don't check my use-by dates too carefully...|
Preheat the oven to 190C (375F). Mix up 100ml of the oil with the garlic and the spices.
Brush the lamb with half the spice mixture. Heat a large non-stick frypan on high heat and sear the lamb, turning for about 10 minutes until browned (but don't leave it too long like me, because, umm, they burn...).
Pop those babies in the pre-heated oven - the recipe says for 15 minutes, but mine needed much longer than that (at least 35 minutes). This may be because I have a crap oven where the door doesn't close properly or they got the recipe wrong. Or a bit of both.
Because you got all the other stuff organised, you now have time to sit back, relax and have some pre-dinner nibbles. I got this a-mah-zhing St Agur blue cheese, a very nice goats cheese brie from Tasmania and a French merlot that was on special. Erhmagerd! So very, very, good.
After the 15 (or 35) minutes are up, take the lamb out of the oven and brush it with the remaining spice mixture, cover in foil and put aside "to rest". According to chefs, this is the most important part of getting your meat nice and tender.
Increase the oven temperature to 250C (480F).
Heat a frying pan over high heat, add 2 tbs of oil and fry half the potatoes until golden (about 3 minutes). Don't forget the remaining other half!!
Transfer golden potatoes to a flat roasting tray. Sprinkle with salt, lemon zest and thyme. Roast for 10 minutes. Drizzle with olive oil and lemon juice. Roast for another 10 minutes. Or mis-read the recipe after drinking merlot and whack everything on at once and roast for 20 minutes...
Decide meat and potatoes is not enough, so whip up some marinated olives and fetta cheese:
Serve up sliced lamb, roast potatoes with salsa verde, yoghurt dressing and olive/fetta mix:
Nom noms!!!! "Real" dinner! And cooking it and eating it with my family made my life seem much less complicated :-)
How good is a roast dinner?
What's your favourite roast?