Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Asparagus from Seville and lamb from Bon Appetit

So two quick recipe shares. One is from a bodega in Seville, the other from Bon Appetit.

Roasted asparagus--everyone has had it, right? Lightly coated in olive oil, a bit of kosher salt, roasted in the oven for 15+ minutes. Quite good. But much much better when roasted with some spring onions. To keep the roasting time equivalent, cut the spring onions to about the same size of the asparagus. The spring onions will carmelize a bit, and it was really surprising to me how much of a difference it made to include them. I kept the ratio of asparagus to spring onions about 3:1.

Second recipe tip from Bon Appetit. Now I have to confess, I got a gift subscription and didn't find a recipe that called to me in the first 3 issues so I was beginning to think I was in the wrong audience for this. But then I came across this recipe (full recipe) for a lamb marinade, and it was amazing. You will see that the full recipe includes a sauteed asparagus dish--I actually substituted the Seville asparagus instead since I had the oven on anyway, and the timing worked to cook both together (though you have to be vigilant on both the lamb and the asparagus when the oven temperature is as high as 500F).

For those of you who just want the marinade recipe, here it is:
1 tablespoon cumin seeds
1 1/2 cups (lightly packed) fresh Italian parsley leaves
1/2 cup (lightly packed) fresh mint leaves
1/2 cup (lightly packed) fresh cilantro leaves
2 large garlic cloves
1 tablespoon sweet smoked paprika (pimentón dulce)* or sweet Hungarian paprika
1 teaspoon coarse kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

Roast cumin lightly in a frying pan, put all the ingredients (except for the olive oil and lemon juice) in a food processor, chop fine, then drizzle in 2 Tb of the oil. Then set aside 2Tb of the mash to mix with the rest of the oil and lemon juice and reserve to use as a relish after meat is cooked. The rest of the marinade use to marinade the meat, 4 hours minimum recommended. Worked great with lamb, but I think it would be also fantastic for chicken and fish.

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