Monthly Archives: August 2013

slow-cooked curried lamb neck chops

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The lamb leg steaks in the supermarket were going to cost me an arm & a leg. ‘Blerg!’, I said, & settled for the neck chops: a delicious cut that well repays slow cooking. Which is what I did for a kilogram of them yesterday.

First up, coat the chops in well-seasoned flour, melt some butter with some vegetable oil in a heavy pan, & brown both sides of the chops (do this in batches!) before transferring them to a slow-cooker on low heat.

Lower the heat under the frying pan & add one finely-sliced onion to the fat in the pan. Once it’s started to turn translucent, add as much garlic & ginger as you fancy – in my case it was 6 cloves of minced garlic & rather more than a tablespoon of finely minced raw ginger. Stir to mix & follow with the spices: I used 2 tsp ground coriander, 3 tsp ground cumin, 1/4 tsp hot ground chilli, a cinnamon stick (broken in two), and about a dozen whole cloves.

Next, stir in any flour remaining from the chops, along with 500ml beef stock & then carefully pour the lovely spicy broth over the meat in the slow cooker.

Cover & walk away 😀

After 6 hours of that you should be able to lift out the chops & simply pull the meat off the bones. Remove the cinnamon stick pieces – your dinner guests will have to look out for the cloves themselves! Carefully decant as much of the fat as possible from the broth in the cooker, then return the meat to the cooker bowl & add a couple of Tblsp of plain yoghurt & one tsp of garam masala. If you want a thicker gravy, now’s the time to blend a Tblsp or so of cornflour with some of the broth and stir that through the curry. Leave it on low until you’re ready to serve, & then sprinkle some chopped fresh coriander leaves over the top.

We had it with another curry (of potatoes, cauliflower, & peas cooked with coriander, turmeric and cumin & some chicken stock) and naan bread hot from the oven. And followed with a choc-orange version of a cheesecake – one that I realise I haven’t written about yet. So that will follow shortly 🙂

And then sat around for a while as the food was sooo good & we all ate more than we should have.

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sweet chilli prawns

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The daughter was away over the weekend. While she is an obliging offspring, there are some things she’d prefer not to see on her plate, & so we like to take advantage of these absences in order to indulge ourselves. Thus on Saturday, as we did our supermarket shop, the husband earnestly besought me to make ‘nice tasty prawns’ for dinner. And so we picked up 400g of raw frozen prawns as we passed the chilled/frozen seafood section, & went on our way to the checkout.

When dinner time rolled around, I decided that some noodles would be good – I try to keep a few packets of udon noodles in the pantry, so grabbed a couple of packets & transferred their contents to a bowl before putting the kettle on to boil. (These are the Trident noodles from the supermarket ie soft & longlife.)

Then I got everything else together: a thumb-sized piece of raw ginger, very thinly sliced (I love my slicey-grate-y mandoline-y thing that I bought at Fieldays) and then chopped even finer; 8 cloves of garlic (because that was how many there were in the small head of garlic in the kitchen; no vampires at our place tonight!); a long sweet red pepper, also very finely sliced; freshly squeezed lime juice, & the bottle of sweet chilli sauce. And the prawns, which I’d left out to defrost.

I sloshed a bit of olive oil into my heavy-based frying pan & brought it to a medium heat before adding the ginger & garlic, shaking it around so they didn’t burn. The prawns, once drained, went in next. It took 4-5 minutes, stirring often, for their flesh to go from translucent to white and their tails to that nice pink that tells you they’re done. After they’d been cooking for about 2 of those minutes I added the red pepper slices.

At that point I also poured the hot water from the kettle over my noodles, stirred them around to separate them, and microwaved on high for 60 seconds.

By this time the prawns were done, so I added the lime juice and a decent slug (ie to taste 😀 – about 1/4 c in my case) to the prawns & mixed so that everything was coated, then drained the noodles & yelled that dinner was ready.

I regret to report that between the two of us we ate the lot.