Sunday, May 22, 2011

Local Lamb with a Foreign Flavor

In the last 18 months, eight thousand, four hundred, and ninety nine people have viewed my yelp profile, during which time I have failed to write a single review. Despite the fact that people seem to like what I have to say, I've grown tirelessly bored of writing reviews and have sadly morphed into what can only be described as a disenchanted foodie. This isn't to say that I don't like dining out, because I've had some amazing meals recently, but Michelin star chefs aside, when it comes down to it, "the great thing about foie gras, is that it's foie gras."

Yet, like every junkie, I simply can't put the needle down, best I can hope for is to change up the cocktail, maybe step it up a notch. And in the process of working on that recipe, I've come across some do it yourselfers with PHDs, survivalists with crazy ideas on the rapture, and some back to the earth farmers raising some of the best product I've ever seen. Grass finished beef and lamb isn't just better for you, but it has a flavor that can't even be compared to the mass produced factory style protein coming out of our nations CAFOs. The below recipe is Israeli, and used lamb shoulder from Spring Lake Farms, which I was able to obtain as a member of While I can't say enough nice things about Spring Lake farm, or the animals that they raise, it's probably best that you read about them here or for the illiterate, watch this great short film about them here.

Ingredients (Serves 4-6)
2 lbs 4 oz fresh lamb, chopped or ground
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 hot green pepper, chopped
1 tsp salt
1/2 tablespoon baharat spice mix (below)
4-5 large ripe tomatoes
2 onions, quartered
Pita dough, below

Mix the lamb, hot pepper, garlic, salt, and baharat seasoning into oval kebabs and grill along with the quartered onions. Roast the tomatoes and chop coarsely.

Transfer even assortments of lamb, onion, and tomatoes into oven safe dishes and entirely wrap in pita dough, rolled out to roughly a 1/4 inch thickness. Sprinkle with sesame seeds and place in a 400 degree oven for roughly ten minutes or until the pita is evenly browned.

Baharat Spice Mix
1 tbsp ground cardamom
1 tbsp black pepper
1/2 tbsp ground allspice
1 tbsp ground cinnamon
1 tbsp ground ginger
1/2 tbsp ground nutmeg

Pita Dough
1 3/4 c bread flour
1/2 oz yeast
3/4 c water
1/2 tbsp honey
1/2 tbsp salt
1 tbsp olive oil

Combine in a mixer and knead with a bread hook for roughly 10 minutes, transfer to a large bowl and allow to rise for 30+ minutes before rolling it out.

****Making goat cheese and "Milk and Honey" soap today.....we'll see how that goes.