Tag Archives: sweetpotato

Rack of Lamb with Honey & Balsamic Sauce

Lamb Rack with Sweet Potato Mash and Honey Balsamic Reduction

There’s something about a nice rack of lamb that makes it hard for me to pass by, when idlely drifting through butchers shops, purveying their cuts. Lamb is one of my favourite dishes full stop, but to be able to combine it with a ready made handle AND have it look classy on a plate at the same time, is just genious.

So this was a pretty simple dish I made up on the spur of the moment (read: spent all day thinking about and scouring the web for ideas), which I think turned out just dandy.

Lamb Rack

  • Rack of Lamb (or two)
  • Olive oil (a given really, just buy a few gallons of good quality olive oil and you will be doing yourself a big favour)
  • Rosemary (Is it possible to do a lamb dish without rosemary ?… I think not)
  • Salt (do yourself another favour and go and get some Maldon Salt… beautiful texture and flavour for cooking)
  • Cracked Pepper (do yourself a huge favour and buy a pepper mill, and load it up with peppercorns)
  • Balsamic Vinegar
  • Honey
  • Red Wine (nothing specific, but preferably something drinkable)

To Serve With

  • Sweet Potatos
  • Butter
  • Cream
  • Rosemary
  • Fennel

How I made it

So firstly, cut down into your lamb rack a little and stuff every concievable orifice you can find with fresh rosemary, salt, black pepper, and libations of olive oil. Score the fat on the back of the rack, and rub that down with salt and pepper too. Now crank your stove up to high and sear your lamb rack in a healthy dose of olive oil in a hot pan. Make sure you give it a good covering so that the tricky parts all receive a fair amount of heat, and then when it’s looking charred to perfection, drop the heat, and put it into the oven to continue cooking through til done. Keep the pan juices as we’ll use those for the sauce.

Once the lamb is away in the oven, peel and slice your sweet potato and fennel. Get the sweet potato boiling in a pot of salted water, and braise the fennel in a little white wine and butter over a low/medium heat so it softens up. Once the sweet potato is cooked, but not mushy, drain the water and mash with extra rosemary, butter, cream, salt, pepper, and a little grated parmesan.

Next the sauce… Pretty simple really… Into the pan juices goes a good few dashes of balsamic vinegar and a good squeeze of honey (I’d give you measurements, but i really didn’t use any… I generally cook to taste and measure things by eye). Give this a taste and you have a lovely sweet balsamic flavour coming through… which I then pulled back to savoury land with the help of a splash of shiraz and dash of beef stock. Reduce the sauce down, and keep stirring to make sure the honey doesn’t seperate, and perhaps thicken with some corn flour and water… and you’re done.

If God didn't want us to eat animals... he wouldn't have them out of meat.Lamb Rack

At this point I cut all the lamb racks up into french cutlets (if thats what french cutlets are of course… ) and attempted to pile it onto a plate in some sort of attractive formation. Sadly failing… after taking some photos, I heaped the rest of the lamb on top and Sharon and I devoured them as best we could.

Delish.

Egg Week – Poached Eggs on Sweet Potato Mash

Poached Eggs on Sweet Potato & Spinach Mash

Well egg week continues here at Abstract Gourmet. Lazing around last night, wallowing in my own little world of ennui, and too lazy to cook a “proper” meal. I once again turned to my new favourite book of the moment, Eggs, by Michel Roux.

This recipe was supposed to be called “Herby Poached Eggs in Mousseline Potato Nests”. Problem was I was running low on potato, and so I made the executive decision to give sweet potato a run. This was easy as pi (3.14159 26535 89793 23846 26433 83279 50288 41971 69399 37510…). Boil some sweet potato in salted water until its soft. Drain, mash, add butter, mash again, add a little milk, some baby spinach, and some parmesan, mash again. Stop.

Cook two poached eggs to perfection, make a little mound of mash on your plate and put a hole in the middle, drop the eggs in and top with a sauce or stock reduction of your choice. I choice to reduce a little of my home made chicken stock with a stick of butter and a touch of corn flour. Then a little cracked pepper and we’re done.

Poached Eggs on Sweet Potato & Spinach Mash

Caramelized Onion stuffed Pork Burgers with Enoki & Sweet Potato Fries

Onion stuffed Pork Burgers with Enoki & Sweet Potato Fries

I love burgers. To me they are the epitome of the self contained meal.. You’ve got your carbs, your protein, and your vegetables… animal, vegetable, and mineral all together in one nice little bundle.

This recipe was inspired by a great book i’m reading at the moment aptly titled Burgers, by Paul Gayler (actually, the link is to the US version of the book, the Australian version is basically the same with a different name). This one is my own creation though… so blame me and not him if it all goes horribly wrong.

Open faced

Ingredients (I’m not good with quantities, so you’ll have to fill in the blanks):

Pork mince (500 gms or so)
1 red chilli
small bunch of coriander
1/2 tsp ground cimmanon
1 egg
good olive oil
couple of onions
2 Tblsp sugar
a few knobs of butter (yes knob is the correct term for a piece of butter)
sea salt
cracked pepper

baby spinach
enoki mushrooms
couple of big sweet potato’s
vegetable or sunflower oil for deep frying
flat bread for toasting
japanese mayonaisse

Directions:

Chop the chilli finely and roughly chop the coriander. Mix well through the pork and add the other ingredients. Cinnamon for a sweet taste, salt and pepper to season, egg to bind the mixture, olive oil because everything needs olive oil.

Now chop the onions finely and saute them in a little butter and olive oil. Slowly add a tablespoon or so of sugar to the onions, and perhaps a little white wine, so they soften up and caramelize nicely. Give them a while to cook so they are really soft and golden brown. These onions are a great garnish to lots of different meals, but we’re going to stuff them inside the burgers just for the hell of it.

So now get a ball of the pork mixture, flatten it out, and place a small pile of the onion mixture inside. Add another ball of pork to the top and seal it up into a nice burger looking shape. Good to go.

Heat a pan with a little oil and sear the burgers on each side until they’re just cooked through. At this point i transferred them to a
flat grilling tray to try and get those nice grill marks on them… but it was only mildly worthwhile.

Meanwhile heat your vegetable oil in a heavy pan… I’m not the greatest deep frier in the world, in fact it scares me everytime i have to do it, so by no means am i an expert. The trick for me is finding the right temperature. You want it cool enough so you don’t burn the sweet potato to a crisp on the outside and leave them hard in the middle, but no so cool that they go all soggy without crisping up.

So now peel and cut up the sweet potato into big chunky fries and rinse them under water to wash the starch off. Them
my best advice would be to keep an eye on them closely and fry them in small batches until they’re nice and golden on the outside and soft inside.

Once you’re burgers are done and fries close to finished you can start to assemble the burger. Toast or grill your flat bread and arrange a bed of spinach, then pile on top the burger, enoki mushrooms (Sharon’s all time favourite mushroom), and a little of the caramelized onion.

Season the sweet potato fries with salt and cracked pepper, and perhaps a little paprika, and serve next to your burger with some japanese mayonaisse as a dipping sauce.

Stop...burger time...

There you go… a nice complicated way to make a simple burger :)