an equal opportunity eater.
Taking the neurosis out of food, one meal at a time.
Monday, January 16, 2012
Sometimes you have the centerpiece of a feast that deserves special treatment. Like a lamb roast, donated by an occasional carnivore, in search of the perfect approach. And yes, you have to risk a new approach will turn out delectable, despite misgivings and a suddenly unreliable oven.
Gigot a la cuillere
Which is French for lamb tender enough to eat with a spoon.
Heat your oven to 210 degrees.
In a Dutch oven, heat a tablespoon of olive oil. Take your four pound lamb roast, shank or shoulder and brown on all sides. Remove lamb, pour out oil and fat. Add a bottle of plonk (white--if, like some you have an aversion to $2 Chuck, find a $4 bottle at the grocery story) and deglaze, scraping up any bits and pieces. Add a cup or two of chicken stock, bring to a simmer. Add browned lamb, five crushed garlic cloves, a bay leaf, a sprig of parsely, a sprinkling of dried rosemary or a sprig of fresh. Cover and place in oven, for 5-7 hours, (that is correct, not a typo) turning the lamb hourly. If the stock seems overly reduced, add a half cup of water as necessary.
What's great about this slow cooking is that it allows you plenty of time to check your email, write a few chapters of your novel, set the table, take a nap, chat on the phone, all the time not worrying at all at all about what's in the oven. Unless you're mildly neurotic, like me, and you spend your 5-7 hours fretting (baselessly) about how it will turn out.
Remove from oven, let rest fifteen minutes or so. Serve sliced or shredded, with your choice of sides, (creamed spinach! roast potatoes!) to general acclaim.