#1  
Old 07-20-2009, 12:13 PM
Peasant
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: North London, UK
Posts: 39
Default Breast of lamb

Last night was breast of lamb and ratatouille.

Breast of lamb (same as belly pork, but from a sheep!) started as a 10" square slab. Bones removed.

Get lots of fresh herbs. I happened to have mint, rosemary, thyme, chives handy. Chop finely, and spread out on one side of the meat. Salt + pepper. Roll tightly, and tie with a few pieces of string. Needs quite a long, slow cook, so fired the oven to rather less than pizza temp. Cooked it in a roasting tray which started with 1" of water in. Kept turning. Water evaporated eventually and it ended up fabulously crisp, with the fat rendered out. 1.5 hrs total cooking time. Just had a small fire still going - basically just embers - so as not to overcook the outside before the inside was done. Recommended.

Also ratatouille the easy way. Chop all the veg (onions, aubergine/eggplant, red bell pepper, garlic). Add to a deep dish. Add canned tomatoes + olive oil + chopped herbs. Stick in oven. Stir occasionally. The slight smokey flavour and occasional burnt bit really add to the flavour. Probably 1hr total time, but very forgiving, could have eaten it after 30 mins.

No pics, sorry :-(

Last edited by David Reekie; 07-23-2009 at 06:46 AM. Reason: forgot the olive oil + herbs!
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  #2  
Old 07-20-2009, 12:29 PM
Serf
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Seabeck, WA
Posts: 15
Default Re: Breast of lamb

Sounds excellent David. I am starting to break ground on my project, this is more inspiration to get started.
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  #3  
Old 07-20-2009, 06:10 PM
Il Pizzaiolo
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: San Antonio
Posts: 1,719
Default Re: Breast of lamb

Hi David!

Sounds great! You have no idea how hard it is to get nonstandard cuts like breast of lamb here in the US. One of the things I love about the UK (and Europe in general) is the diversity of meat cuts available!

I really like the idea of doing ratatouille in the oven. I do R fairly often but have never used the oven! Thanks for suggesting it!
Jay
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Old 07-23-2009, 06:48 AM
Peasant
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: North London, UK
Posts: 39
Default Re: Breast of lamb

Finding less usual cuts of meat has got a lot easier here over the last 2-3 years - there has been a bit of a renaissance of interest in them. Which is good, but does mean the prices has gone up for people like me who have been buying them for longer than that! It's definitely easier on much of the continent though - my wife is Swedish and I love the stuff they stock in their supermarkets.

I'm lucky enough to have two very good local butchers though.
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Old 07-23-2009, 07:39 AM
Il Pizzaiolo
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: San Antonio
Posts: 1,719
Default Re: Breast of lamb

We have so few butcher shops it is a joke. Our grocery stores CLAIM they have "certified butchers" at all times in all stores. But they don't get carcasses. They get plastic wrapped, marginally wet-aged meat in the most popular cuts. The interesting stuff goes into hamburger and hot dogs. So it's hard to get something unique unless you special order it. Breast of veal, breast of lamb, and most offal is special order. And then you have no choice. You get what they receive with no options.

And the trimming and cutting is often abyssimal - even in the most expensive meat markets.

Keep up the good cooking!
Jay
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Old 07-23-2009, 07:46 AM
Peasant
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: North London, UK
Posts: 39
Default Re: Breast of lamb

Don't get me started on 'wet ageing'! I totally refuse to buy steak from supermarkets.

Even their top of the range supposedly 'dry aged' stuff is worse than normal, traditional, same as its ever been meat from my local butchers....
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Old 07-23-2009, 02:16 PM
papavino's Avatar
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Join Date: May 2009
Location: Seattle, WA
Posts: 220
Default Re: Breast of lamb

We've got a couple stands at the local farmer's markets that sell lamb and woolly pigs. I might have to ask them for some breast of lamb. Just thinking about it makes me hungry.
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