Lamb & Roasted Curried Vegetables

11 Jul

About a year ago I discovered the magic of the lamb shoulder chop.  It is a complicated cut that requires a little bit of effort to eat, but not much to cook.  There are alternating layers of tender meat and fat all surrounding a couple of bones.  It isn’t as pretty as the rack of lamb, but it is incredibly flavorful and very inexpensive.  It also cooks in under 10 minutes and there is something very satisfying about picking up the bone and picking off the last little chunks of meat.

Lamb holds up well to strong flavors.  Tonight I did a marinade of cumin seeds, olive oil, lemon zest, salt, pepper and a bay leaf.  I refrigerated the whole thing for about 6 hours and brought it to room temperature before cooking it in a very hot cast iron skillet for about 3 minutes on each side.  While the meat rested, I made a quick salad of arugula and radishes, dressed with olive oil and lemon.

The lamb and salad are sitting one of the favorite side dishes in our house.  The constantly evolving roasted curried cauliflower.  This dish is a winner.  It requires little attention and you can throw most any vegetable on into the mix.  Tonight it was cauliflower, eggplant and tomatoes.  Toss the whole mixture with olive oil, curry powder, salt, cumin seeds and red pepper flakes.  Roast at 350 until golden.  About 25 mins or so.  You might want to give the tray a shake half way through.  A welcome addition to this dish is the addition of fresh spinach, folded into the hot vegetables fresh out of the oven.  The spinach wilts and adds a great velvety texture.

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