oven roasted lamb shank with eggplant parm bake and creamy chard and beans

ImageImage

Yesterday I was feeling the need for something warm, filling, and different. I saw the recipe for a similar eggplant parmesan au gratin, and I knew I wanted to do something similar. So what goes great with eggplant? Lamb. I had never cooked it on my own before, and I was very nervous for how it would come out. Luckily, everything turned out perfectly, and it was a great addition to this hearty meal! I also had some swiss chard sitting in my fridge, and I remembered this great risotto I made a while back that had greens and small white beans in it, so instead of doing it that way, I ditched the rice and transformed it into a creamy side!

Ingredients

Lamb

lamb shanks (or a cut you feel comfortable with)
rosemary & thyme (fresh)
garlic
olive oil
salt & pepper
wine (normally I would recommend a hearty red wine but all I had when I was making this was a dry white wine and it turned out ok!)

Eggplant Parmesan Bake

one medium sized eggplant
roma or heirloom tomatos (i used a mix of both)
breadcrumbs
olive oil
salt & pepper
fresh grated parmesan (romano will work as well)
fresh mozzarella

Creamy Swiss Chard & Cannellini Beans

one can of cannellini beans, drained
a few sliced of pancetta, chopped (optional)
swiss chard
salt & pepper
rosemary
half a container of creme fraiche

Instructions

Throw all of the ingredient for the lamb in a gallon sized zipper bag and let it marinade for a few hours. When it is finished marinading, pour the contents of the bag into a baking pan, and add some more fresh herbs on top of the shanks. For medium rare, you will want the lamb to be anywhere from 130 degrees to 140 degrees internally. I baked mine at 400 degrees for about 45 minutes, with an addition 10 minutes to rest. The size of the shanks will affect the cooking times, so I would check the temperature after 30 minutes to check where the meat is at.

Meanwhile, peel the eggplant and cut in half lengthwise so you can cut half moon shaped slices. Once the eggplant is sliced, place it on a sheet of parchment paper and drizzle with olive oil and put it in the oven with the lamb for a few minutes to start the cooking process. While the eggplant is roasting, slice up your tomatoes and mozzarella. When the eggplant is mostly cooked, take it out of the oven and start layering in an au gratin pan. I layered the eggplant, then the tomatoes, bread crumbs, and parmesan, and repeated. Then I added the mozzarella on top, along with breadcrumbs that I mixed a touch of olive oil and some more parmesan. When there is about 5 minutes of cooking time left on your lamb, put this back in the oven and allow to bake until the lamb is finished resting, for a total of about 15-20 minutes, or until the top is golden brown.

Last but not least are the creamy swiss chard and beans. This takes the least amount of time so do this as the end when the eggplant is about half way finished baking, add your chopped pancetta to a sauce pan and brown. Add the beans, salt, pepper, rosemary, and creme fraiche to the pan and let cook down to a rich a creamy sauce. Add the swiss chard last- it just needs to soften up a bit. This will only take 2 or 3 minutes.

Once everything is finished, you can plate and enjoy!

ImageImageImageImage

kale and herb bread

ImageImage

i mentioned in my last post how much i love the blog green kitchen stories. this is another one of their recipes that i was super excited to try and it came out wonderfully!

2 1/2 cups lukewarm water
3 g active yeast (the size of a pea) or 1/4 tsp dried yeast
2 tsp sea salt
1 tsp honey
1 handful fresh herbs or kale, very finely chopped (i used kale, marjoram, basil, and thyme)
2 3/4 cups of your favorite flour (i used whole wheat flour)
2 cups of your favorite flour (i used half whole wheat flour and half regular white flour)
extra flour for folding
1 oven proof dutch oven, cast iron or ceramic pot

“Place water in a large mixing bowl. mix the yeast into the water until it is dissolved. Add salt, honey, herbs and kale and stir until well mixed. Sift the flours and add to the water mixture. Mix together until all is combined, yes it will look kind of loose and messy and not as pretty as a traditional bread dough, but that is normal. Cover with plastic wrap, set aside to ferment in room temperature for 12-15 hours.

When you unwrap the bowl, the dough is bubbly and sticky. Prepare your work surface, flour the kitchen counter and a kitchen towel (you’ll use that later). Pour the dough out on the flour covered surface and dust the dough with flour or it will be to sticky to handle. Then fold it 4 times. Take the first side and fold it onto the middle of the dough. Repeat this for the opposing side, then do the same thing to the top and bottom. Now place the folded dough on the flour dusted kitchen towel with the folded sides down. Fold the kitchen towel over the dough and let rise for 2-3 hours (in room temperature). When there is about 40 minutes left of the rising time, turn on the oven to 500F (250°C) and place the dutch oven (no greasing needed) with the lid on in the oven. When the oven is ready, the dutch oven is smokin’ hot and the dough is done rising. Carefully remove the dutch oven from the hot oven, using oven gloves. Unwrap the dough and place/drop it in the dutch oven. Slash the dough with a knife, then cover with the lid and place it back in the hot oven. Bake for 30 minutes, then lower the to 445F (230°C), remove the lid and bake for another 15 minutes. Remove it from the oven, let cool slightly, turn the dutch oven upside down and place the bread on an oven rack to cool.”

these instructions were pretty fool proof and my loaf of bread turned out perfect! i served the bread with white beans that were tossed with olive oil, garlic, salt, pepper and basil and snacked on it while i was making the rest of my dinner!

barbacoa burrito bowl

Image

after spending the week in new york, i felt the urge to get back into my kitchen ASAP. so, this morning i took a walk down to whole foods and grabbed some ingredients for crock pot Barbacoa, a recipe that my brother and his girlfriend had made for me in the past. the dish is pretty simple to make, and i was so happy with the results!

originally posted on paleomg and then on cave girl in the city, this barbacoa is paleo friendly, and Whole30 friendly! personally, i wanted to make this more like a burrito bowl so i also made spanish black beans and rice with a quick salsa.

Barbacoa:

For the first round of cooking

  • 1.5-2 lbs Grass Fed Beef Rump Roast, trimmed of extra fat (if you’d like)
  • 6-8 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 2-4 bay leaves
  • ¼ cup apple cider vinegar
  • ¼ cup vegetable broth
  • 1 yellow onion, roughly chopped
  • ½ red onion, roughly chopped
  • 1 tablespoon cumin
  • 2 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, roughly chopped
  • 1 tablespoon adobo sauce (from the can of chipotle peppers)
  • 1 container of chopped mushrooms (optional)
  • salt and pepper, to taste
For the second round of cooking
  • 1 16oz can tomato sauce
  • 1 12-16oz can green chiles
  • 1 tablespoon chipotle chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon ground red pepper
  • ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
  • ½ teaspoon nutmeg
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
  • salt and pepper, to taste
Instructions
  1. Add to your crock pot: garlic cloves, bay leaves, apple cider vinegar, broth, chopped onions, cumin, chipotle peppers and sauce, mushrooms, salt and pepper, and rump roast. Mix ingredients around to help coat the rump roast.
  2. Cover and let cook for 6 hours on high or 8 hours on low. Run a fork along the rump roast at the end of cooking to make sure it is done and easily shreddable.
Once the roast is done cooking:
  1. Use a couple forks to shred the meat in your crockpot.
  2. Discard the bay leaves.
  3. Add in tomato sauce, green chiles, and spices. Mix thoroughly
  4. Let cook on high for 30 minutes-1 hour.

Black Beans:
Ingredients:

  • two cans of black beans
  • a packet of goya sazon seasoning
  • some garlic powder
  • some oregano

Instructions:

Add both cans of beans (and liquid) into a sauce pan. Mix in the packet of sazon, as well as a generous amount of garlic powder and a few shakes of oregano. Also add in a can full of water and bring to simmer. Cook the beans long enough for the liquid to start to thicken.

Quick Salsa

Ingredients:

  • A few tomatoes
  • Half a red onion
  • Two cloves of garlic
  • A drizzle of olive oil
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  • Some lime juice
  • Fresh Cilantro

Instructions:

Dice your tomatoes and onion. Mince the garlic and throw in the rest of the ingredients to your liking. This was very quick and forgiving to make, and you can also add in chiles and jalapenos if you’d like!

I served this all on top of brown rice that was mixed with some butter, cilantro, and lime juice!

 

Image