Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Feasting on a Budget: Lamb and Kale

It's another feasting on a budget recipe! How about a delicious herb-rubbed lamb dinner, with a side of kale and a loaf of fresh bread? We had 3 people and tons of leftovers* (oops!)

Lamb, kale, and good bread: another delicious 4-person feast for under $40!

Shopping list:

Lamb (2 lbs on sale for about $13)
Kale (Farmer's market: 1 lb for $2.50)
Fresh bread (Farmer's market: 1 loaf for $5)
fresh mint, thyme, & rosemary ($2.50 each)
Bacon ($4)
Chicken broth ($1)
2 shallots ($1)
Approximate total: $29


Lamb (2 lbs, or 4 1/2 chops)
Kale (Farmer's market: 1 lb)
Fresh bread (Farmer's market: 1 loaf)
fresh mint, thyme, & rosemary (about 1/4 cup each)
sliced shallots (2 should be plenty)
3/4 cup Chicken broth
(5 tablespoons) Olive oil

Black pepper (to taste)
Sea salt (to taste)
2 slices Bacon
1/3-1/2 cup Balsamic vinegar/red wine vinegar
1/4 stick Butter (2 tablespoons)

Slice your fresh bread. Fill a small plate with herbs, sea salt, and pepper, then add a little balsamic vinegar/red wine vinegar and olive oil. Dip your bread in.

Heat a large frying pan to medium-high. Add 2 slices of bacon that has been cut into chunks, and let cook. When bacon is mostly cooked, add the kale. Cook until it's wilted. Serve with a little sea salt and black pepper.

Mince fresh thyme, mint, and rosemary. Add sea salt and fresh ground pepper, and rub into lamb chops. Cover and let sit for 15 minutes for flavors to soak in.
When lamb is ready, heat frying pan to medium-high. Drop lamb chops on and cook for about 3.5 minutes on each side. Set onto serving platter to keep warm.

Lamb gravy:
Add shallots (sliced) to skillet. Cook until just browning.
Pour in red wine vinegar or balsamic vinegar, about 1/2 cup. Add 3/4 cup chicken broth. Continue to cook on medium until gravy has reduced by at least half. Remove from heat, add butter, and serve with kale and lamb.
(Note: Fresh bread is excellent for soaking up the delicious gravy!)


*Guilty admission: One of our ladies also treated us to an extra appetizer: Sliced mozzarella, tomatoes, and prosciutto with olive oil and sea salt. Given that the meal could have easily served 6, I took off 2 servings for the extra appetizer.
Fresh mozzarella-$8, 2 roma tomatoes-$2, l small package chopped prosciutto-$4. (Brings the total to $43, although sometimes you can find cheese-case mozzarella on sale for less than $8, or you can skip the prosciutto entirely and still have a delicious appetizer!)
Slice mozzarella and tomatoes and layer in a 9x9 pan; drizzle olive oil over. Add prosciutto and a little sea salt and pepper to taste, plus some leftover herbs. Broil until mozzarella is mostly melted.
Served over the fresh bread instead of dipping it in olive oil! Delicious. 

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