Posts Tagged ‘rosemary’

Mint and Rosemary-Encrusted Leg of Lamb with Cinnamon and Cranberry Pan Sauce made me decide that lamb is my favorite meat. The crust was the best part. But the meat alone was perfect without accompaniment. However, the sauce was the shining component. No matter what combination you try, the dish is delicious.

  • 1 leg of lamb (mine was 6 1/2 lbs)
  • 1 bunch of mint
  • 1 package of fresh rosemary (5-6 sprigs)
  • Around 8 cloves of garlic
  • olive oil
  • 1 stalk of celery
  • 5-6 baby carrots
  • 1 white or yellow onion
  • 1 handful of dried cranberries
  • beef stock

1. Preheat the oven to 400º. De-stem the rosemary and mint and roughly chop them. Use more mint than rosemary because it is more subtle in flavor. Grind in a food processor with five cloves of garlic, salt, pepper, and enough olive oil to make a moist paste. Remove some of the tough fat from the lamb, leaving the thinner layer of soft fat. Heavily coat the entire leg with kosher salt and some pepper too. This will pull moisture out of the fat, creating a crust. Slather on the herb paste.

2. Roughly chop the baby carrots, the celery, and the onion. Put these in the roasting dish with the lamb and some dried cranberries, garlic cloves, olive oil, mint—if you have more—salt, and pepper. Dust the lamb and the vegetables with some cinnamon.

3. After 30 minutes in the oven, turn it down to 350º. Add some beef stock and red wine. Cook for about 1 1/2 more hours, but don’t let it exceed 145º. If you like it more rare, take it out around 130º. If you like it fully cooked, go to 160º. Remember that the lamb will continue to cook.

4. In a sauce pot, make a roux by heating two tablespoons of butter with a big five-finger pinch of flour. Mix until you reach a paste and add the sauce. Bring it to a boil and reduce. Slice the meat into thick pieces, against the grain, and serve.

Pseudo-Scalloped Potatoes with Dill Butter and Mayonnaise are a perfect side dish because they look so elegant—like accordions of flavor. They are crispy, tender and even cook faster. The herb butter and mayonnaise make them rich, yet simple too.

  • Small white or red potatoes
  • butter
  • fresh dill
  • fresh parsley (optional)
  • mayonnaise
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • salt and pepper

1. Make thin slices in the potato, going about 3/4 down so it still holds its shape. In the food processor, blend two tablespoons of butter, dill, parsley, salt, pepper, four cloves of garlic, and olive oil. Massage over the potatoes and do your best to get the mixture inside the crevices.

2. Roast in a 400º until they are crispy and soft. The time varies depending on the size of the potato. For the final few minutes, add a dollop of mayo on each and spread it on. It will melt into the niches.

Oven-Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Sweet Brown-Butter and Wine Sauce have a nice nutty flavor from the browned butter

  • half a stick of butter
  • brussels sprouts
  • olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • honey
  • white wine
  • nuts (optional)

1. Coat the sprouts in olive oil, salt and pepper. In a sheet pan, roast in a 400 º oven until they brown.

2. Melt half a stick of butter in a pan and add chopped walnuts or pecans if you have—something for a toasty crunch (I used sunflower seeds). Drizzle in some honey and a splash of white wine. Mix the brussels sprouts with the brown-butter and serve.

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Since you are what you eat, why not be the best. This pizza will make your neighbors flock to your door just to take a whiff of the tantalizing aroma. I don’t know what’s more pleasing, the audibly crunchy crust or the silky, melted cheese on top. I figured, why not take something usually left plain—the crust, and boost the flavor by adding fresh rosemary and roasted garlic. Basil adds a lemony aroma and the feta cheese adds a briny punch of flavor.


  • 1 Trader Joe’s pizza dough
  • 1 head of garlic
  • 1 rosemary sprig
  • shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1-2 tomatoes
  • tomato sauce
  • feta cheese (optional)
  • fresh basil
  • olive oil
  • flour
  • salt, pepper

(All can be found at Trader Joe’s)

1. Allow the dough to come to room temperature. In the meantime, heat the oven to 425º. Cut off the top of the wider end of the garlic head, revealing all the garlic cloves. Tightly wrap in aluminum foil with some olive oil and salt. Roast for 15 minutes. When the garlic is cool, you can squeeze out the cloves.

2. Flour the working surface as well as the dough. Flatten the dough with your hands or a rolling pin—I used an olive oil bottle. Heck, if you want to have some fun, try throwing it in the air like the pros. Roughly chop the rosemary and garlic and press them into the pizza crust with a drizzle of olive oil and a sprinkle of salt and pepper. Bake the crust on a flowered pizza pan or baking sheet for 6-7 minutes.

3. Top the crust with a little tomato sauce, chopped basil, tomato slices, lots of shredded cheese, more tomato slices, and feta cheese crumbles, respectively. Bake until the cheese is melted and begins to brown. If you have a crappy GW oven, you may need to rotate the pie to promote even cooking. Scatter freshly ripped basil leaves and conclude with a drizzle of olive oil.

Good pizza is a simple proportion: less box, more flavor.

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We call this a Shepherd’s pie even though it is technically a cottage pie. We had beautiful carrots, zucchini, and squash that were home-grown. I chopped them into chunky pieces to make a real peasant stew. My father brought fresh Rosemary and Thyme. Rosemary is a strong herb and works well in stronger sauces like tomato sauce. This is also why I used a red wine instead of a white. It was hard to time all the vegetables, but they all came out tender, yet with a bite. I love the flavor and aroma that fresh herbs add to the dish. The red wine and crushed tomatoes make a low-fat  sauce that tastes like it took forever to make. Hearty, Homey, Heavenly.

Ingredients: (I left my pieces on the bigger side)

  • 2 1/2 cups chopped carrots
  • 2 1/2 cups chopped whites onions
  • 2 cups chopped zucchini
  • 2 cups chopped squash
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • Fresh Thyme
  • Fresh Rosemary
  • about 5 potatoes
  • 2 lb. Ground beef
  • cream
  • Red Wine (I used Cabernet Sauvignon)
  • 1 large can crushed tomatoes
  • 1-2 ears of corn
  • 1 stick of butter
  • salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder.

(You will need to have boiled potatoes ready when necessary)

1. In a huge metal pot, sauté the chopped carrots for about 2-3 minutes in olive oil. Season with salt, pepper, fresh thyme, garlic powder, and onion powder.

2. Add the zucchini and squash and re-season in the same manner. In the meantime, using a different metal pot, caramelize the chopped onions over high heat. Season as before. After about 4 minutes, add 1/2 the minced garlic and corn kernels. After a minute, add the onions to the other vegetables and cook until the carrots are beginning to become tender. I added snap peas, which I parboiled and added at this time.

3. Now that the onions are gone, cook the beef on high heat with some extra oil. Season likewise. Add some more minced garlic too. Remember: it will continue to cook with the vegetables.

3. Add about a cup of wine and reduce to a simmer for a few minutes. Add the can of crushed tomatoes (The tomatoes, not the can). Season to taste with garlic powder, onion powder, salt, fresh pepper, and thyme. Add Worcestershire sauce and 3-4 sprigs of rosemary. Simmer and add more wine if it cooks off. I used a gravy master for darker color. Remove the Rosemary sprigs. Pour the mixture into a large casserole dish. I used a Cazuela which is a traditional spanish cooking vessel.

4. Mash the potatoes (some skin is fine) with cream (8-10 oz.), a stick of butter, salt and pepper. Spread over the filling. I topped mine with the Rosemary sprigs and some thyme for aroma. Keep it warm in the oven until service.

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