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What did you have for dinner?

Discussion in 'Off-Topic Discussion' started by al n, Sep 19, 2013.

  1. Val..

    Val.. Confessed snail lover

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    I had.......................the same as last night!!! :biggrin:

    Val
     
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    • Zigs

      Zigs Ginger Admin Staff Member

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      Half a slice of Garlic Bread, a piece of Edam and a bottle of Blackcurrant wine [​IMG]
       
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      • shiney

        shiney President, Grumpy Old Men's Club Staff Member

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      • al n

        al n Total Gardener

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        Now in my pit with a bowl of bran flakes watching salvage hunters. I KNOW how to live......... :hapydancsmil:
         
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        • shiney

          shiney President, Grumpy Old Men's Club Staff Member

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          Lamb couscous.

          I've a lot of boneless leg of lamb in the freezer from when it was on special at £5 per kg. :blue thumb:

          This is my own version of the popular North african dish.

          Couscous is also the name of the stew that accompanies the couscous grain. The stew has a lot of rather thin gravy that is quite highly spiced but it is absorbed by the grain which also dilutes the flavour a bit.
          This recipe is for about ten people but can be stored in the fridge for a few days or can be frozen (it is better if the potatoes and courgettes are left out if freezing). The quantities can be reduced but it always seems to turn out better if cooked in bulk.

          The recipe can be adapted for lamb, chicken or vegetarian. In N. Africa they usually use whole boiled eggs in it if they're not having meat.
          Some oil
          5-6lb Leg of Lamb in 1” cubes (remove skin and fat)
          6-7 pints water
          3 large mild onions (sliced not chopped)
          2 cloves garlic crushed (more if you love garlic)
          6” stick of cinnamon
          2” long and about 1” square root ginger grated
          1/2 nutmeg grated
          2 tablespoons coriander seed ground
          2 teaspoons cumin seed ground
          2 teaspoons ground black pepper
          2 tablespoons paprika
          5 tablespoons tomato puree
          2 fresh green chillies (optional - I use red chillies as they are the only ones I grow)
          2 bay leaves
          1 bunch of fresh coriander leaves finely chopped
          salt or stock cubes to taste
          11/2 lb carrots cut into chunks
          2 lb courgettes cut into chunks
          1 lb turnips cut into chunks
          1 lb potatoes cut into chunks
          2 14oz cans chick peas

          Put the water, onions, garlic, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, coriander seed and leaves (keep a few leaves back for sprinkling on each dish as you serve it), cumin, pepper, paprika, tomato puree, chillies, bay leaves and salt or stock cubes in a large saucepan and bring to the boil.

          Whilst this is coming to the boil fry the lamb in oil until browned (you can use chicken - or both if you wish) and add to saucepan. Simmer, covered, for 25 mins. Add carrots and continue simmering for 10 mins. Add potatoes and turnips and continue simmering for 10 mins then add courgettes and chick peas and simmer until the vegetables are cooked but not too soft.

          Cook the couscous grain in your usual way (or according to the packet). Don’t forget to add some butter or oil to the grain to help prevent it from sticking together. If it is too sticky spread it on a large biscuit tray and put in the oven on very low to help dry it a little - this is also a good way to keep it warm if you have cooked it early. If you wish, when serving the grain you can add any or all of the following:- chilli powder, ground coriander, ground cinnamon. I prefer not to add any but in different parts of N. Africa these are traditional.

          It is also traditional to have a small dish of harrisa or chilli sauce available for those who like to add some extra heat to their meal. Harrisa is usually made from dried red chillies soaked for 30 mins, garlic, ground coriander, ground caraway, salt and water all put in a blender and turned into a puree.
           
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          • Jenny namaste

            Jenny namaste Total Gardener

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            Oooh Mr Shiney,
            I can smell it from here. Sounds scrumptious...:dbgrtmb:
            Jenny
             
          • shiney

            shiney President, Grumpy Old Men's Club Staff Member

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            Very easy to make and doesn't take long. I make it in that quantity and it lasts for some days.
             
          • Jenny namaste

            Jenny namaste Total Gardener

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            Cutting up the lamb requires a very sharp knife and loads of concentration doesn't it. How much meat per person do you consider is right? That's £10 + worth of lamb - not cheap but I do love spiced lamb in all its guises.
            Was this an "on offer" New Zealand frozen piece from Sainsburys? I rang a couple of days after you gave the thumbs up but it was no longer on offer.
             
          • shiney

            shiney President, Grumpy Old Men's Club Staff Member

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            Yes, it was the offer. At the price I bought it we are able to do it in that bulk for entertaining and still have some left over for the next day (or two).

            As it has already been boned out it's quite easy to cut up. If you like the fat and skin then it's even easier. If you're removing the fat and skin the bulk of it is easy to get off. As it is already boned, you lay the skin side down and cut vertically down to the skin/fat level but not into it. This is done easier if you cut down in the middle of the joint. Then turn your knife sideways and ease it along the fat/skin whilst peeling off the meat. Then do it in the other direction. A boned leg would take me about five minutes to peel and chop.

            A leg with the bone in is a bit more difficult but still easy. Most of the fat/skin can be gradually peeled back in strips - knife under edge of fat/skin and gently ease up with the other hand whilst sliding the knife along. A sharp knife comes in handy :blue thumb:

            It goes quite well with chicken. Either use chicken thighs and legs and follow the recipe but reduce the first cooking time from 25 to 15 minutes. Or with chicken breast where you only put the chicken pieces in the pot about five minutes before the end. Using thighs and legs adds a lot of chicken flavour whereas breast doesn't.

            Have you tried my marinated roast leg of lamb?
             
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            • Jenny namaste

              Jenny namaste Total Gardener

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              No - but I'd love to.
              Just give me a time and date Mr Shiny..:wub2:
              Jenny
               
            • Fat Controller

              Fat Controller Cuddly Scottish Admin! Staff Member

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              I'm going to cheat a wee bit tonight, and try those new chicken wrap things from Maggi (basically it is a herb/spice mix that coats a chicken breast which is then wrapped in parchment and cooked in a hot pan), with roast sweet potato and A N Other veg yet to be decided.
               
            • Jenny namaste

              Jenny namaste Total Gardener

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              Looking forward to your culinary report later FC,
              Jenny
               
            • longk

              longk Total Gardener

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              Last night was Kaeng Liang soup. A slightly watery and rather spicy Thai soup with a heavy fish flavour, I made it with pumpkin, sweet potato, red pepper, matchsticks of ginger, spinach, shittake mushrooms, cabbage, caullie, broccoli, courgette and pork. Added a few fine noodles too.

              Best way to describe it is "Kickass"!!
               
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              • Jenny namaste

                Jenny namaste Total Gardener

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                A beef stew using the dregs of the Guinness and Barley wine left over from yesterday's Christmas Pudding mix, together with Herby dumplings,
                Jenny
                 
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                • longk

                  longk Total Gardener

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                  They should be made law with stews! Big or small, I love them:)
                   
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