Sunday, July 10, 2011

Herb Grilled Rack of Lamb

I'm probably the only food blogger in the world who doesn't regularly attend Farmer's Markets.  I've always wanted to, but sometimes Farmer's Markets require getting up really early on a Saturday, and I don't like to do that.  Not even for food.  This past Friday night, I made sure to pack it in early after having a few drinks with friends so I could wake up early and go to the market.  But first....did you know they make CAKE FLAVORED VODKA???  How cool is that!?!?  Holy heck, is it delicious!  I'm usually a wine girl (not sure if you picked up on that subtle hint), but this new concoction might make me a cocktail girl after all.  You can mix cake flavored vodka with ginger ale and it tastes like cream soda.  Or you can mix it with Sprite and a splash of OJ and it would taste like a creamsicle.  The possibilities are endless!  But I digress.

I finally made it to the South of the James Farmer's Market on Saturday and I am hooked!  It was so cool!  I was clearly a Farmer's Market rookie, though.  I was certainly over-dressed, and I also failed to bring 2 crucial things: 1) cash, and 2) re-usable grocery bags.  Rookie, I tell ya.  The cash situation was rectified by my husband, who always carries cash.  And who also mocked me relentlessly when I mentioned that I assumed they would take credit cards at the Farmer's Market.  "Ann, they are FARMERS, I don't think they are going to bring their credit card machines to their tents".  Turns out he was right.  Good thing he had $60 on him or I would have been really sad.  And the bag situation was rectified because I brought my brand new Kate Spade bag with me, and it has a lot of extra room in there (I know most people don't bring their designer purses to Farmer's Markets, but it was new and I love it.  Plus, purses count as re-usable bags, right?  Right!).  So we were all set, and my rookie mistakes didn't stop me from spending all of my husband's $60 on delicious things.  We got red pepper/parmesan bread, some soy wax candles, the biggest, juciest blackberries in the world, a bunch of sweet corn, fresh pasta, and some limeade.  Somehow that cost $60.....

Anywho, I'm totally going to the Farmer's Market every Saturday.  They also have jewelry and pottery there.  And sourdough donuts!  And next time I'll probably dress down a little more and remember my cloth grocery bags and leave Kate at home.  You know, just so I look less like a rookie.

As per usual, this Farmer's Market rambling has nothing to do with the food I'm about to post.  I didn't get this rack of lamb at the Farmer's Market, but its next on my list to blog about, so there you have it.  I loooooooove lamb so so much but its intimidating to cook because if you do it wrong, you've just wasted a very expensive piece of meat and that is just sad.  Luckily, this lamb turned out perfectly and we had it with some couscous and a bottle of wine from a local vineyard.  Then we put the rest of the wine in solo cups and had a "walking happy hour" with the puppy.  If you've never done this, you should start.


Herb Grilled Rack of Lamb
Source: Adapted from Grilling Guru

1 rack of lamb
1-2 tablespoons each - fresh rosemary, thyme, and oregano, chopped finely together 
3-4 garlic cloves, minced
¼ cup olive oil
course sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Rub coarse salt and black pepper into all the surfaces of the meat.  Next, put the herbs and garlic in a small bowl and add enough olive oil to make a paste. Rub this garlic/herb mixture thickly over all the exposed surfaces of meat on the rack of lamb. Place it in a shallow dish or bowl and cover.  Marinate about 2 to 4 hours.

Allow the meat to come up to room temperature prior to cooking.

Sear each side on high for 2 minutes and then turn grill down to medium. 

Cover with your grill lid and let cook on indirect heat for 10-12 minutes, or until done to your desired doneness. It should be a bit pink in the middle still when finished.

Remove from the grill and let rest in a warm place under foil for at least 10 minutes. Then slice into either individual ribs or double servings, two ribs per piece.

Whole Wheat Couscous with Truffle Oil, Golden Raisins, and Walnuts
Source: A Cooking with Wine Original

1 cup whole wheat couscous, prepared according to package instructions
1/2 cup walnuts
1/2 cup golden raisins
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
salt and pepper to taste
few drizzles white truffle oil

Prepare couscous according to package instructions.  Add walnuts, raisins, garlic powder, salt, pepper, and truffle oil.  Mix together and serve immediately.

Grilled Romaine Hearts with Mini Heirloom Tomatoes and Lemon Vinaigrette
Source: loosely adapted from Addicted to Recipes

2 romaine hearts
3 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
1 tbsp minced garlic
1 tbsp Dijon Mustard
1 tsp Worcestershire Sauce
2 Tbsp shredded parmesan cheese
4 Tbsp Olive Oil

Whisk together oil, lemon juice, garlic, worcestershire and mustard. Stir in cheese and set aside.

Preheat grill over medium - high heat. Cut romaine length wise leaving the core so each half remains together. Spray with olive oil spray or Pam. Grill until grill marks form and lettuce wilts. About 6 minutes turning twice. Remove and drizzle with vinaigrette dressing and top with tomatoes.

1 comment:

  1. I want to eat (and drink!) everything in this post. LOL