After a week of not cooking, I feel like a complete bum (and my taste buds and stomach are craving any and everything that is packed full of flavor.) While I was sick, I realized how much I love to cook. Every night I had zero energy, but really wished I could have been whipping something tasty up to eat.
I tend to talk about my blog a lot with friends and co-workers (surprise, surprise.) Something I noticed from this: a lot of people love to cook. It's just one of those things people don't usually talk about it, since eating is a necessity in life. But I'm not going to lie to you, I really like talking about it! ;) One of my co-workers is always telling me about these amazing dishes she comes up with, just by looking at ingredients she has in her fridge and knowing what flavors go well together. It's amazes me to hear about what she does, but it's so discouraging because after almost 3 months of regularly cooking, I'm not able to do that. There aren't many dishes that I can whip up by looking at random things I have on hand. Everything I cook requires a recipe.
I know everything takes practice and I can't wait until I'm mixing recipes and creating my very own dishes. I'm ready to keep at it and grow in my cooking abilities. With that said, I decided to cook outside of my comfort zone tonight.
Lamb Chops with Couscous and Broccoli
I have never given a single thought to cooking lamb, but why not? I need to take risks in my kitchen and tonight was the night to start. I combined a recipe I found on cooks.com with a strong suggestion made by my local butcher. These turned out AMAZING! They were full of flavor and very tender and juicy.
6 to 8 lamb chops, 1/2 to 1 inch thick
1/2 red onion, finely chopped
2 cloves of garlic, crushed and chopped
3 tbsps extra virgin olive oil (evoo)
1/2 tsp thyme
1/2 tsp rosemary, crumbled
Salt and pepper to taste
1/2 tsp lemon juice
1) Combine all ingredients except chops and combine well, by hand. Rub mixture into chops on both sides. (The recipe then called for 2 hours of stand time to allow the rub to set it. I did not have time to do this so I went straight on to cooking.)
2) Place chops in a dry large skillet and cook on low heat for 20 to 25 minutes. Be sure not to add any oil to the pan, the chops will already be coated from the rub. My butcher was very adamant about this. When I told him my original plan was to broil the chops (which you can do - 5 minutes on each side,) he yelled at me, saying that the chops should be cooked slowly. I figured I should listen to the pro and did as I was told.
Take a look at how great these turned out!
Next onto the side dishs: I love couscous. I don't know what it is about it, but the texture and taste make for a great add on to any meal. There is really nothing special about this recipe. I advise that everyone follow directions straight from the package that you buy. The only extra thing I add is a tablespoon of butter and a dash of Lawry's Seasoning Salt. For the broccoli, again, follow the directions from your package of choice. You can't go wrong. ;)
If you haven't tried something new in a while, I suggest you give this a whirl. It's not the cheapest dinner, but it tastes great. And if you're anything like me, you'll feel pretty accomplished when you're finished! ;)