Saturday, 6 April 2013

Mediterranean Lamb Shoulder Chops

Lamb you either love it or leave it!
Which one are you?
I remember as a child when my parents had lamb once or twice a year, at Easter and Christmas, it was always a no go for me!
It was generally stinky!
 My parents being of European origin really lived the sustainable life style.
It would have been considered a "sin" to not utilize the whole animal if it's life was sacrificed for you.
So I have seen everything... of which I won't get into today!
As I have grown older my taste buds have changed but, so has the lamb.
It certainly doesn't "smell" anymore. I believe that is due to the change in the way the animals are fed
Having said that the price of lamb is affordable if you buy the cuts that are a longer cooking time.
So my "boys" can have this dish anytime of the week.
For the guests who love lamb this is quite inexpensive and easy to entertain with.
8 shoulder chops
2 bay leaves
2 cups tomato puree, or whole stewed
salt & pepper
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
1/2 cup red wine
1 onion, chopped
1 tsp each garlic powder, oregano, paprika
2 tbsp vegetable oil
In a large preheated skillet on medium high, add the oil and place as many chops down as can fit into the skillet.
Brown well on both sides. Remove and continue browning the remainder. Place all chops back in.
Don't worry if they are on top of each other.
Add the wine and bay leaves.  Sprinkle with approx. 1/2 tsp of salt and pepper or to taste.
Reduce the heat to a rolling simmer, allowing the wine to reduce. Turn the chops to distribute the wine. 
Add the tomatoes, herbs and spices.  Turn to coat all of the chops.
Place in a preheated 350F oven and roast covered for 2 hrs. Turning over to distribute heat and sauce every hour. Remove when fork tender.
*I like to skim off the extra oil with a large spoon, as this is cholesterol, which of course is not good for you*
Serving Suggestion: Spoon the sauce over cooked rice or use crusty bread for dipping
Serves: 4 hungry men!
Enjoy with love!

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