|Succulant little lamb abed Rutabaga Puree'|
The story goes that Morasch Meats, a local meat company in Portland gives meat boxes to Seminary Students to bless them during the holidays and chooses to give back generously, just as God has generously given His grace to us through Jesus.
We had been saving the rack of lamb for a special occasion. The Lawrences were visiting and we wanted to celebrate their exciting news of moving to Oregon on account of Taylor's new job opportunity.
I turned to Ina again for the inspiration- never to be disappointed.
Ingredients for Lamb Persillade:
2 small racks of lamb, frenched
good olive oil
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
2 cups loosely packed fresh parsley leaves
3 cloves chopped garlic
1 cup fresh bread crumbs
2 teaspoons grated lemon zest
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
*serves 4-6, medium rare
Ingredients for Rutabaga Mash and Crispy Shallot:
1 1/2 cups vegetable oil
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
4 shallots, diced into thin rings
3-4 large rutabagas
1 cup milk
3 tbs butter
freshly ground black pepper
* Serves 4-6
Anytime you combine two dishes for a meal, it takes timing. Success in the kitchen is ALL about timing.
Begin with heating the oil and butter slowly. Once the oil has reached 220 degrees, reduce the heat to low/medium and add shallots and cook about 30-40 min, until they are golden brown. Oil should stay below 260 degrees.
Next peel your rutabagas. This was my first experience with anyone in the turnip family. Other than Peter Rabbit, I had never come in contact with them. It's a shame, I have to peel that waxy skin off, cause it's just so beautiful.
Dice them up into 1 inch cubes and with the salt, boil them in water for about 30-35 min. We're aiming for very tender here.
Your lamb should be ready to go. Heat your oven to 450 degrees. Place racks on the rack (that's fun to say) and drizzle olive oil, salt and pepper. Fat side should be up.
A couple things about picking good lamb. Dark red meat is a good sign, shows "youngness" which means tenderness. If your butcher is cutting these for you (not everyone gets 20 pound meat boxes dropped at their door step...) or you're buying them from the store, you want the fat trimmed but still present on the top for flavor.
Also, check the marrow. You want to see red in the bones. This is my number one way of checking the quality of the lamb- we're not going for mutton (older sheep), we want the little guy... bless his/her little heart. Quick, very quick tear... now back to the oven.
Roast uncovered for 10 min.
How are those shallots doing? Giving them stirs every now and then?
Now it's go time:
Food process fresh bread crumbs. I used some wheat sour dough. Need about a cup or so.
Then process the crumbs, with the parsley (lovely color!), garlic and lemon zest.
|Loving my new micro-plane!|
Roast lamb for another 15 min.
The shallots are probably done. Using a blotted spoon, lift shallots onto a paper towel.
|a couple batches in fit them all in|
Timer again! Get the lamb. Let it rest for another 15 min- SO SO SO important. Do not rush this. The juices must redistribute!
Serve with a few greens in a balsamic vinaigrette with homemade crouton and avocado. And don't forget the crispy shallots on the "pur-ash" or the "mash-ure" (whatever you did to break them down). I'd pair with a red wine that carries notes of toasted spice, blackberry and earthy herb.