Thursday, March 11, 2010

Baaaaaaa. (mmm.)

This winter, my husband picked up a new client (he works with Medicare Advantage insurance) and learned that she raises sheep for a living.  Because we have an increasing interest in buying our produce and meat locally, and because he loves to do business with his clients wherever possible, he immediately placed an order for a lamb.

I've never really cooked lamb.  I'll admit to being a bit intimidated about taking on a whole carcass worth of unfamiliar meat.  But no more!  The wonders of the modern (online) recipe hunt have vaporized my trepidation.

Our Lamb Lady brought the sacrifice to death's door; once the deed was done and neatly packaged, I was dispatched to pick up the results.  (FYI- if you're looking for a slaughterhouse-- our lamb lady prefers this establishment because they don't kill the animals in front of one another.  This is much more humane, and also keeps their adrenaline levels down, which improves the meat flavor.)

Thus far, we've enjoyed three different dishes.

My foodie friend Faith's crockpot Lamb Ragu was our first adventure.  She's right-- the longer you can leave it in the crockpot, the more meltingly delicious it is.  (The browning phase made a massive mess on my stovetop, though.  I'll use a dutch oven instead of a frying pan next time to try to cut down on the splatter.)

Next, my husband prepared and grilled Alton Brown's amazing Silence of the Leg O' Lamb, which wowed our pastor and his wife (and us too).  YUM.

And finally, tonight I whipped up a quick stovetop version of this Rustic Lamb Stew from Recipezaar.  Again, very tasty, although I think the prescribed 8 hours in the slow cooker might have made it even better.

I'm still adjusting to the gamier taste of lamb, but it's not unpleasant-- just different.  The fun of hunting down these new recipes, though, has made our introduction to preparing lamb an adventure.

Hooray for new, healthier food habits!


Kerri Fivecoat-Campbell March 17, 2010 at 8:10 AM  

I'm glad you found a local place to purchase meat. I would be happy going completely vegetarian if I could just get my husband to do it. We have the documentary, "Food Inc." here to watch. Maybe after that. :)
Our neighbors eat lamb and until they cooked it, I had never tried it, not bad for meat, but you're right, it has a different flavor than the usual cow and pig.

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