Since I was felled with a most terrible sickness on Holy Thursday, I had no other choice but to cancel Easter. If you have an upper respiratory infection you generally don't feel the need to be hanging at the stove or having a house full. It took a weeks' worth of antibiotics, steroids, inhaler, and pills to stop the coughing. This Sunday was the first day that I felt really better, so I had lots to do.
We decided that we wanted to have leg of lamb. I think that we have made leg of lamb once or twice, it must not have been all good, it would have been memorable if it was. I kept going back to Thanksgiving with the deboned stuffed turkey and how incredibly good it was. I thought that the lamb could be just as wonderful, so I needed it deboned and butterflied. I was perusing recipes and found a goodly seasoned stuffed leg of lamb. Done. That is what I wanted to make. The only extra that I needed get would be the brioche bread for the stuffing.
Stuffing for the lamb began, as all good things begin, with bacon. I started with bacon. I had to toast the bread, in my haste of putting the groceries away, I forgot to leave the bread out to get stale. Then I thought about when we were kids, Kiki and I would toast the bread and then rip it into pieces for Mom to make stuffing. I guess you could not buy stuffing bread in the bag back then, or maybe it was more cost effective to buy a stale loaf of bread then toast it. While they were toasting, I drained the pan almost, then sauteed shallots and garlic til they were tender. I put rosemary, thyme, sage, cardamon, mint, allspice, fenugreek, clove, cumin, paprika, red pepper, salt, and pepper into the mortal and pestle, then ground it all up. The flavors were spot on, problem was that when I went to put them into the sauteed shallots, the bowl slipped. Instead of seasoning til the taste was right, all went into the pan and it was a bit overmuch. Oh well, lesson learned. I turned the bread bits in the shallot mix, added a few Pignoli nuts, and let it sit.
With one very sharp knife, large cutting board, and keen sense Andrew butterflied that lovely piece of lambiness. He cut it exactly how we needed it done, he should have been a butcher. By the time he finished it, he had skillfully left fat where it needed to be, and cut out the rest.
It was a cakewalk to put the stuffing on the lamb, attempting to roll it, not so much. I cut the string in what I thought was a good length, I was wrong, and I can't tie a knot for shit. Andrew took over the whole shooting match, he was handed down his Mother's brocciole making skills, and tied that little beauty up. While it was true that my MIL used enough string to dock the Queen Mary, Andrew is much more reserved with his string, then again she used thread. Before we put the stuffing on, I just could not help myself, I added quite a few more pignoli nuts.
The fun did not stop because it is "Artichoke Time". almost as good as "Cardone Season" but half, 3/4 less work, maybe 90 percent less. The artichoke selection has been ok, to me they don't seem very heavy for their size, on the upside they are unbelievably delicious....These were made in a flash with a quick 30 minutes to cook. They were filled with garlic, cheese, and olive oil drizzled over. Then steamed in chicken broth. Yeah, that good....
for all that I have I am truly blessed and thankful.
Thursday, April 2, 2015
Some of my most favorite memories have involved food, it could have been the preparation, eating, or even just watching it being eaten, I have enjoyed it all. I have been racking my brain trying to figure out a most special gift for Kathy. I kept coming up empty, nothing, nada. I could come up with nothing, there is nothing on this good green earth that I could possibly get for her. That is when it hit me, crepes.....Kathy loves crepes and she has enough Lingonberry jam to last her a lifetime. She is now in dutch, no Danish, in crepes.
Well Happy Birthday my friend......
Well Happy Birthday my friend......