Lancaster farming. (Lancaster, Pa., etc.) 1955-current, November 29, 2003, Image 50

Below is the OCR text representation for this newspapers page. It is also available as plain text as well as XML.

    i6-Lancaster Farming, Saturday, November 29, 2003
Secrets For Serving Lamb
DENVER, Colo. While
home cooks principally serve
lamb for springtime feasts or a
special holiday occasion, succu
lent lamb entrees are featured on
restaurant menus year-round. In
fact, lamb’s popularity in restau
rants has increased by 50-percent
in recent years.
So do professional chefs pos
sess special secrets about lamb?
Acclaimed chefs including Jim
Botsacos of Molyvos Restaurant
in New York City, Pano Karatas
sos of Kyma Restaurant in Atlan
ta, Melissa Perello of Charles
Nob Hill Restaurant in San Fran
cisco, and Brooke Vosika of the
Four Seasons Hotel in New York,
are prime “lambassadors” who
all generously reveal their lamb
One secret that’s necessary to
share, it seems, is that all cuts of
lamb are freshly available and af
fordable beyond spring, through
out every season. In the United
States alone, there are more than
75,000 lamb producers yielding
high quality, fresh domestic
products every day.
Another secret is that lamb is
easy to prepare, and in many
popular “all American” and eth
nic styles. “American lamb, in
particular, is sweet, tender and
mildly flavored, so it soaks up an
array of marinades and season
ings,” said Chef Botsacos. “Lamb
has a great affinity with many
seasonal herbs and spices, which
is one reason it’s a highly revered
meat in the Caribbean, Europe
and along the Mediterranean
The mild flavor profile of
American lamb can come as a
pleasant surprise to some home
cooks who may generalize all
lamb products as having a strong,
even gamy, taste. This is a mis
perception when it comes to do
mestically raised lamb, which is
freshly available and primarily
grain fed to produce its clean
milk flavor and high meat-to
bone ratio.
“American lamb’s distinctive
taste holds up perfectly with nu
merous cooking methods,” said
Chef Perello. She adds that vari
ous lamb cuts are ideal for grill
ing, broiling, roasting, braising,
stewing, sauteing, and stir-frying.
Many leading specialty food
retailers are featuring a larger
array of lamb cuts in the meat
case year-round due to the latest
culinary trends. “Our customers
are seeking alternatives to main
stream beef, pork, and chicken
because of the strong shift in both
creative and ethnic cooking styles
seen in restaurants,” said Ed
ward Penfold, a butcher at the
popular Fox and Obel gourmet
Recipe Topics
If you have recipes for topics listed below, please share them
with us. We welcome your recipes, but ask that you include ac
curate measurements, a complete list of ingredients, and clear
instructions with each recipe you submit. Be sure to include your
name and address. Recipes should reach our office one week be
fore the publishing date listed below.
Send your recipes to Lou Ann Good, Lancaster Farming, P.O.
Box 609, Ephrata, PA 17522.
6 Gifts From The Kitchen
13 Holiday Cookies
20 Holiday Baking
27 Party Ideas
marketplace in Chicago. “Anoth
er trend lamb supports is the
focus on protein diets, as custom
ers want to savor flavorful pro
tein options.”
Four Seasons’ Chef Vosika,
whose American lamb entrees
change with the leaves, believes
in the idea of “Sunday Lamb” to
be regularly enjoyed by couples.
On lazy Sundays, couples can
savor the aromas of slow cooked
Chef Karatassos believes that
while lamb is certainly an im
pressive dish to mark a special
occasion, it can easily be prepar
ed anytime at home. “Ground
lamb is an appetizing way to ex
tend lamb’s holiday welcome in
the American kitchen and back
yard grills. It could be used for
savory appetizer meatballs, or for
seasonally spiced lamb burgers
the ultimate gourmet burger.”
American lamb is the leanest,
meatiest lamb in the world,
thanks to sophisticated breeding
and nutrition programs. Unlike
most red meats, lamb does not
have a “marbling” of saturated
fat throughout its cuts. This
makes for one of the leanest red
meats one can eat. With most of
the fat limited to the outside
edges, it’s easily trimmed. A re
cent study shows that only about
36-percent of the fat in lamb is
saturated. The rest is mono or
polyunsaturated, the “good” fat
in one’s diet.
Lamb is also relatively low in
calories, as some cuts of a cook
ed, lean, three-ounce serving con
stitutes less than 200 calories. Its
protein is nutritionally complete,
providing all eight amino acids in
the proper ratio and it is high in
B vitamins, niacin, zinc, and iron.
All nutrition facts reference the
U.S. Department of Agriculture’s
National Nutrient Database for
Standard Reference, Release 16
(July 2003).
A variety of American lamb
cuts are comparable in price to
other finer beef and pork cuts,
according to Penfold. Shoulder
cuts are among the most flavor
fill, and always a good value re
gardless of the time of year.
If a particular cut is not in the
meat case, that doesn’t mean it’s
not available. “Just ask the
butcher, and pre-order whenever
possible” is the advice of Tom
Koulris, chairman of the Ameri
can Lamb Board. “Butchers and
grocery stores can obtain fresh
product quickly from any Ameri
can lamb supplier anytime of the
For recipe ideas from the
American Lamb Board, visit
1 pound lean ground lamb
% cup chopped fresh mint
V* cup dry bread crumbs
1 teaspoon lemon pepper
Lightly mix together lamb,
bread crumbs, mint, and lemon
pepper. Shape into patties. Broil
or grill 10 minutes or until de
sired doneness.
Yogurt Mint Sauce:
% cup plain yogurt
'A cup firmly packed fresh
mint leaves
1 teaspoon sugar
Combine sauce ingredients in a
blender or food processor and
process until smooth with tiny
flecks of mint. Serve sauce over
V/2 pounds lean ground lamb
1 cup milk
1 egg beaten
V> cup cracker crumbs
'A cup finely chopped green
'A cup finely chopped onions
I A cup ketchup
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons Worcestershire
1 teaspoon prepared mustard
'A teaspoon ground pepper
In 2-quart mixing bowl, com
bine lamb, milk, egg, cracker
crumbs, green pepper, and on
ions. Mix well. In small bowl, mix
together ketchup, salt, Worces
tershire sauce, mustard, and pep
per. Mix'thoroughly. Place lamb
mixture in loaf pan or form loaf
and place in baking pan. Pour
ketchup mixture over lamb. Bake
at 350 degrees for 45 minutes to 1
hour, or until done.
Layer the following in a glass
9x 13-inch dish:
2 slices chopped raw bacon
1 pound cooked lamb, in cubes
1 medium onion, chopped,
combined with 1 clove
pressed garlic
4 cups diced raw potatoes
2 slices chopped raw bacon
1 green pepper, chopped
1 tomato, chopped (or 1 cup
cooked, diced, or stewed to
'A cup freshly chopped parsley,
or 4 teaspoons dried pars
Sprinkle with salt and pepper
and drizzle with olive oil. Cover
loosely with aluminum foil and
bake at 425 degrees for 20 min
utes. Lower heat to 300 degres
and bake 1 hour until potatoes
are tender. Remove foil. Sprinkle
with 'A cup -freshly grated Par
mesan cheese. Bake IS minutes
Recipe is from the Languedoc
region of France.
-I buy Parmesan or Romano
cheeses, grate them, and store in
glass jars in my freezer. The Par
mesan cheese available ail ready
grated in the familiar green can
at the market has sawdust in it
(referred to as “cellulose”) to
keep it from caking. I prefer the
pure cheese.
Shepherds’ Ridge Farm
Put 2 tablespoons flour, 1 tea
spoon salt, and '/« teaspoon pep
per into a paper bag. Add V/i
pounds lamb cubes, about 1-inch
square, trimmed of fat. Shake to
cover lamb with flour mixture.
Brown in 3 batches in hot fat.
Lamb is easy to prepare, and one of the leanest
red meats one can eat.
Featured Recipe
“Lamb has been our red meat for most of our married life,
and for all of my growing up years with my parents,” writes a
reader who sent in a variety of lamb recipes from Shepherd’s
Ridge Farm. No additional address or name was attached, but
her comments are worth printing.
She writes, “I have heard every comment imaginable about
how awful the flavor of lamb is: ‘lt tastes like the barnyard or
wet wool or bumblebees.’ “Truly, I didn’t know people ate
such things so that they could compare the flavor with lamb.
“The most common observation is that you need to know how
to cook it.
“Nonsense! Lamb is cooked like any other meat. I have con
verted my beef recipes to use lamb or mutton yes, we eat that,
too. Lamb is to veal what mutton is to beef full-flavored and
The featured recipe is from Shepherd’s Ridge Farm. “The
combination of ingredients may sound questionable to some, but
this is absolutely delicious,” the reader writes. She gave this reci
pe to her husband’s cousin who buys lamb from them. The cous
in reported the lamb was so good, she wished they had dinner
guests to share it with.
6 3 /4-inch thick loin lamb chops
A cup chopped onions
2 tablespoons olive oil or butter
2 cups stewed tomatoes
l A cup small pieces of mixed dried fruits and berries
'A cup brown sugar
3 A teaspoon salt
'A teaspoon pepper
'A teaspoon cinnamon
Vs teaspoon ground allspice
Vs teaspoon ground cloves
Vs teaspoon ginger
Vs teaspoon mace
Vs teaspoon nutmeg
Shake loins in flour and brown in hot oil. Add onions and
saute until onions are tender. Add stewed tomatoes, and dried
fruits and berries to lamb chops.
Stir together sugar, salt, pepper, cinnamon, allspice, cloves,
ginger, mace, and nutmeg, and add to skillet ingredients. Sim
mer 20-25 minutes. Sprinkle 'A cup flour over sauce to thicken.
Serve over cooked rice or pasta.
Add Vi teaspoon dill seeds and 3
cups water. Cover and simmer
Wi hours, or until tender.
Add the following:
8 small onions, halved
3 carrots, in 1-inch slices
2 potatoes, cubed (I scrub them
and let the skins on for bet
ter nutrition).
Cover and cook 25 minutes, or
until vegetables are tender. Add 2
cups fresh or frozen peas. Return
to heat and cook 5 minutes.
Combine Vi cup light cream and
2 tablespoons flour. Stir into stew
and cook until thickened.
Shepherds’ Ridge Farm
3 pounds ground lamb, brown
ed and drained
8 cups water
‘A cup split peas
'A cup pearl barley
Add water to lamb. Bring to
boil and cook 20 minutes. Chill
broth overnight and remove con
gealed fat next day.
Soak peas overnight in water.
Drain next day and add to lamb
and broth. Add barley and cook
for V/i hours.
Add the following to broth,
simmering gently for 1 hour. Stir
1 large carrot, chopped
1 large onion, chopped
2 leeks, split lengthwise, wash
and chop white part and
tender green part
2 celery ribs, chopped
1 large peeled turnip, chopped
2 tablespoons chopped parsley
This is a wonderfully hearty
and healthful soup, perfect for
autumn and winter meals.
Shepherds’ Ridge Farm