Tuesday, 17 July 2012

Recipe LXVI - Lamb Steaks and Mint Sauce with Garlic Potatoes

The Olympic Games are but ten days away, and I am crawling up the walls with excitement. There will be thousands of children performing at the opening ceremony, and I heard that there will be live animals, including cows, chickens and sheep (remember that famous actor's slogan "never work with children or animals"? Watch this space...). But what to do with all those delicious animals after their performance? Eat them, of course, what else?! And to commemorate what will be the defining moment in 21st century British history, I would like to present to you a truly British dish: lamb, mint sauce and potatoes.

Homemade mint sauce is truly different to that from a jar, although the jarred version is not bad at all. But making it at home provides you with an alternative, and it is very, very easy. Five minutes' work, an hour's wait.

2 lamb steaks
5 medium-to-large potatoes
6 cloves of garlic
Some olive oil
For the mint sauce:
2 sprigs of mint
Wine vinegar (e.g. red)
Fine white sugar

Instructions for the mint sauce:
Take the leaves off your sprigs of mint and roll them into a ball. Wit a knife or a pair of scissors, chop into small pieces in a bowl. Take your wine vinegar and pour it over the mint until it is saturated. Do not use too much, just enough to cover the mint and a little extra. I used red wine vinegar, because it is sweeter, but other wine vinegars go well too. Then start to slowly add sugar, until you are happy with the taste. And that's it.

Make it before the rest, as leaving it for a minimum of an hour will give it time for the flavours to run.

Instructions for the lamb and potatoes:
Turn the oven on to 200°C. Peel and slice the potatoes into half-centimetre-wide slices, and boil them in salted water for no longer than 5 minutes to soften them up, but not until they start breaking into pieces. Whilst they are boiling, put three roughly diced cloves of garlic into a frying pan with hot olive oil and fry gently until the pieces go dark.

Remove the garlic and put the oil in a baking tray. Drain the potatoes and put them into the baking tray with the hot oil. Pay attention at this point, as any excess water from the potatoes will spit in the oil. Splash the potatoes all over in the oil, and put it in the oven until the lamb is prepared.

Take some of the mint sauce and lightly spread it over the lamb. Put the remaining three cloves of garlic into the frying pan with more olive oil, and repeat frying the garlic, then removing it. Whilst it is still hot, put the lamb into the pan and fry vigorously for five minutes on each side, no more. Lamb should under no circumstances be cremated, incinerated or even overcooked.
For presentation, put a spoonful of mint sauce on the end of each piece of meat.
Finally, remove the potatoes, and with the oil from the baking tray, the juice from the meat and a little water from the potatoes, make a purely natural gravy to pour on the plate.

An old sheep is a failure. So let's give the Olympic sheep a proper career highlight: being the heroes of our fine agricultural and gastronomical heritage!

No comments:

Post a Comment