February 25, 2016

Dinner Diary: Broiled Loin Lamb Chops

Oh shit.  I forgot to take something out of the freezer for dinner.  What now?

It's late in the day to go a' foraging.  But how about we stop in at the poor people's Safeway around the corner and see if we don't get lucky -- real lucky,'cause that's our don't-go-to place for meat.

What d'ya know, what *do* you know, little lamb loin chops on sale and lookin' good!  Ah, but it's late -- that means no brining, and at best an hour of marinading. Dare we live dangerously?  Yes, we do, we do, because it's too late not to.  

And that broccoli di rape in the fridge will be a perfect side, so we can work on that while the chops are marinading.  For a red, let's go grab a sweet potato to bake black.  Oh, this is starting to sound good, very good.  This may well require opening a red worthy of good fortune, grace following upon grace....

Okay, let's get that sweet potato in the oven straight away:  wash & wrap in foil, to bake 30 minutes at 400 degrees; then unwrapped another 30, until blackened and oozing.  My soul can smell it already.

Now for marinade:  crush chubby clove hard against platter and rub her down with oozence of garlic, then slice halves and bestrew her with garlic slices;  now drizzle a goodly puddle of light olive oil, a showering of salt, a peppering of pepper, a sprinkling of oregano, squirts all over of lemon, dollops here and there of white wine vinegar, and needless to say, needles of rosemary.  Swish and shake good to go.

Let's trim those chops of all that funky fat, salt and pepper generously all over on both sides, and turn them over and over in the marinade until they look like they like it.  Oh, yes, they like it alright. Delicious to behold!

Okay, now let's do the broccoli di rape.  But will not the tedium of stripping those stalks be much mitigated by a little dry amontillado, some roasted almonds, and ever faithful olives?  Maybe a chunk or two of parmigiano too, eh? Thus provided, let us strip with good cheer!...

Okay, stripped and ready for the pot.  Ah, there's the bell for the potato -- time to unwrap and crank up the heat a bit.  Meanwhile, let's turn those chops over a few more times in the marinade, because we know they like it....

Okay, broccoli di rape bright and unctuous, for which better get some bread in that oven next to those potatos.  And let's put that broiler on high for the chops.

Okay, little chops, your time has come.  Let's scrape off your marinading detritus and blot you down with paper towels, 'cause we'll have plenty of smoke even without oven fires.  Onto your rack you go and but inches from the flame.  Be of good cheer, little Lawrences!  Set the timer for 5 minutes ... ah, you beautiful brunettes you!  Over for 3 more minutes ... ah, you are a sight for hungry eyes!

Let's grab that sweet potato, ready or not.  Pretty ready. Slice it open, slit its steamy sides, salt and pepper heavy, light grating of nutmeg, drizzle of extra virgin olive oil, then butter all over.  Shiny, heady, bestirring.

Time to "plate", as the gourmets say:  a couple of loin chops, half a sweet potato,  bright green nest of broccoli di rape -- tell me, who wouldn't drink a dinner party red with that any night of the week! Let's grab a Taurino from the rack....