Thursday, September 15, 2011

Coffee and Spice Rubbed Lamb Chops

This lamb recipe is to die for, especially if you like coffee.  The marinade is easy to make, and it only takes around 30 minutes to totally infuse the lamb with the rich flavors of the coffee and spices, but you can marinate the lamb for 3-4 hours if you want it to be really bursting with flavor.  Rub the marinade liberally all over both sides of the lamb and let it sit before cooking.

The Meat
- 2 bone-in lamb shoulder blade chops

The Marinade
- 1 tablespoon ground coffee beans (your choice of roast)
- 2 teaspoons crushed garlic
- 1/4 cup of olive oil
- 1/4 cup Port wine
- savory, crushed mint, thyme, sea salt, pepper, cumin, rosemary, and bay leaves to taste

The Sauce
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1/4 cup whipping cream
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1/4 cup Port wine
- 1/4 cup vegetable stock
- 8 crimini mushrooms, sliced
- 1 stalk fennel, diced
- 1 shallot, diced
- the leftover marinade (especially the coffee)
- 1 tablespoon tapioca starch, dissolved in a teaspoon of water

The Veggies
- 4-5 yellow potatoes, peeled
- 1 1/2 cup water
- salt, pepper to taste
- 1/4 cup whipping cream
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1/2 head of broccoli, chopped

When it is time to make dinner, scrape off as much of the marinade as possible and save it for your sauce.  To start the sauce, melt the butter and put the olive oil, fennel, mushrooms, and shallot into a simmer sauce pan.  Saute for 3-5 minutes on medium low heat and then pour in the Port, cream, leftover marinade, and the vegetable stock.  Let this cook for 30-40 minutes on low heat.  In the last 5 minutes, add the dissolved tapioca starch to thicken the sauce slightly. 

Cook the lamb chops on high heat on your griddle pan.  I cooked mine for 8 minutes per side, keeping the inside a little pink since the lamb will continue to cook for around 5 minutes after you remove it from the heat.  You want the internal temperature to reach 125 degrees.

Boil the potatoes for 25-30 minutes on high heat in a covered pot.  Drain and put the hot potatoes in a mixing bowl.  Add the cream and butter, mash them up into some fantastically creamy potatoes.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Steam the broccoli for 10 minutes until the leaves are bright green and the stalks still maintain some firmness.  Place the broccoli on your plates, and spoon some mashed potatoes next to it.  Layer the chops partially over the mashed potatoes and generously cover the lamb with the sauce, making sure to get the potatoes too.  

I hope you'll love this lamb dish as much as we did!

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