Lamb chops are something I love to eat, but never took a hand at cooking myself. I’ve really wanted to for a while now, but could never justify just making chops for myself.
Rosemary lamb chops
So when my friend ordered a rack of lamb from Honest Chops (my favorite halaal/organic butchery in NYC), I decided to take it upon myself to try. And honestly, it’s not that hard at all, but I’ve read different recipes that have different methods of doing it. You can bake it in the oven first, wrap it in foil — I didn’t do any of that fancy stuff. I first consulted with my friend Erica, who’s a chef and always posts the most delicious looking chops (check out her IG: @insta.eggy), and she sent me over some recipes she liked fromIna Garten and Giada. I took a look as a starting point, but ended up with this marination. I pretty much eye’d everything but this it was 1 tsp or so of everything:
Season before cooking
First I sliced the 1 lb. rack of lamb to one bone each, and covered it in this mixture and let it sit in the fridge for an hour. Then I melted butter to baste and seared in a hot pan for 2-3 minutes on each side (any longer made some of them well done). I think it turned out pretty good!
I read in some of the recipes that they marinate the whole rack before cutting — I’m not sure what is better, but this one worked for me. If you’ve cooked chops before, what method do you use? I’d love to try cooking it another way, too!
When my friend Shazia said she wanted to get together in the morning, I was thinking 11 am. She told me she was thinking more like 2pm, so instead of going out for food, I invited her over to eat brunch at my place. Since it was more closer to lunch than breakfast, I thought finally busting out the black truffle oil to make rosemary chicken would be apropps.
I had two chicken breasts which I sliced and seasoned with rosemary, thyme, salt, pepper, and garlic. While that sat for a bit, I sauteed sliced onions and mushrooms in olive oil with a minced garlic clove, a splash of soy sauce and lemon juice. Once that was ready, I set aside and began cooking the chicken in a mix of olive oil and the truffle oil. I covered it as it cooked (about 6 minutes on each side.
After the chicken was cooked, I placed it on a dish and topped with the sautéed veggies. Next, I used the same pan to scrambled four egg whites with Italian seasoning, thyme, salt pepper, and a little bit of asiago cheese.
Totally experimental but it turned out really good (and made a pretty plate to serve). Tomorrow, going to show you what I did with the leftovers for an even healthier meal option :).
“Like” Beauty and the Feast on Facebook
Follow Beauty and the Feast on Twitter
This is kind of the greatest thing to happen to my tiny NY kitchen: the T-fal OptiGrill. Not gonna lie, it looked intimidating to use when I first got it, but I found the smart grill makes cooking meat a no-brainer with its color-coded cooking indicator.
The grill has an automatic sensor grilling so no matter what the thickness, it indicates by beeping when the meat is rare to well-done. When you turn it on, you just click the button showing what meat you’re cooking (they have options for beef, chicken, fish, sausage, etc.). Just close the grill to let it pre-heat, and it’ll beep when it’s ready. Then place the meat, and the sensor will change colors depending on what stage the meat is (rare, medium, medium-well, well-done, etc).
But the to me one of the greatest things about this grill is you can cook frozen meat right on it since it has an option to de-frost the food, then cook it in one shot. Here, I made an easy breakfast of eggs and chicken sausages from Honest Chops (side note: they have pre-seasoned meats available there which I love because it saves me so much time).
Honest Chops frozen chicken sausage before and after
It makes it really quick to prepare meats, like these rosemary burgers I made for guests on the fly (just seasoned it with salt and pepper and added pieces of rosemary. Serve on wheat things with a little mayo spread, kale, chopped onions, and ketchup).
Rosemary burgers (beef is also from Honest Chops)
And lastly the clean-up is super easy because of its non-stick surface. I just wipe a soapy paper towel over it and it picks the grease right up. Saves me so much time. Plus using no oils to grill gives me healthier options to make my food.
TO ENTER: (Do either of the following to qualify, both to increase your chances):
1) LIKE Beauty and the Feast’s Facebook fan page and leave a comment on this giveaway’s post
2) FOLLOW @BeautyNDFeast on Twitter and tweet “Follow @BeautyNDFeast and RT to win a @Tfal_Cookware OptiGrill indoor grill (value $179.99)! #giveaway”
MAKE SURE to leave a comment below letting me know how you entered (either on FB or with your Twitter handle). Winner will be selected and notified Thursday, September 4th. Open to US residents only. Thanks for entering and good luck!!
If you guys were not in New York to experience the winter storm, this “nor’easter” as they call it (clearly, the first time I’ve ever heard that term in my life which says a lot coming from a Chicagoan)…just know it was no joke.
NYC yesterday (pic: daily beast)
The wind, the snow, the cold, the puddles…it was not a day to be outside at all. Just go home, throw your soaked socks in the hamper, and jump under a fleece on the couch, and watch copious amounts of TV. Everyone else? They’re idiots.
Unfortunately, I was one of those idiots. But for good reason, I swear: My friend, Asif Ali, was performing at the famous Carolines on Broadway for the NY Comedy Festival’s Comics to Watch, and the line up quickly proved to be worth trekking through the snow for the show (ok maybe it was just six blocks of trekking for me, but…irrelevant).
After the show, it was only reasonable to finally come to our senses and go back home once the blistering cold air hit our faces on the way out. But by then, a group had formed…a very resilient group…that just wanted chai.
“Cool,” I said. “There’s Haandi or COP not too far from here…” Even while I was saying it, it sounded too far. Which makes it only more mind boggling as to why I would instead agree to catch a train up to Astoria for Roti Boti. The cold clearly numbs decision-making.
But our friend Aman said it would be worth it sloshing through the snow for. “It’s Ron Artest’sMetta World Peace‘s favorite ‘Pakistinian’ joint in New York!” (His words, not mine). I looked EVERYWHERE for this endorsement from Metta on YouTube to share with you all [which, side note, searching Metta World Peace for anything online is kinda one of my favorite things to do when I’m bored so this was a treat]. Sadly, I only found references to it so this video below, although unrelated, was the best I could do:
Anyway. I’ve been to Roti Boti only once before, and all I remember was I was fasting and inhaled my food so fast when it was time to break, that I had no memory of if the food was even good or not. Honestly, anything would have tasted good after 14 hours of not eating. Good thing for us, we made it to to the restaurant and when we saw its big family-style dining table RIGHT next to a heater, it was clearly understood to be a sign from God that we made the right decision.
There’s no frills about this place (ie. peeling paint on the walls, cardboard on the floor and exposed boxes everywhere), but if you consider the desi-family-standard Corelle plates you have to just assume you’re going to get a little piece of home in your meal too.
Thankfully, the chicken tikka masala with naan didn’t disappoint.
Stack of naan
Anyone wanna guess how hungry I was when I took this pic? Clearly not caring.
The saddest part about this post are clearly my food pics — I had no camera and my phone died so I had to basically keep stealing my friend’s camera to take these subpar ones. PLUS I completely neglected to take pics of the tandoori chicken, lamb chops AND chai which all were equally delicious…count the good company, yes, it was totally worth that trek. Plus, a meal with chai that came out to $46 total for six people, we had cab money left over too. What? Did you think we’d walk it back too? We’re not crazy. REPORT CARD
Meal: Dinner/In search of chai
(Out of three stars)
Would I go back?: For a late night bite, it really hit the spot. YES if I’m in the area, or in a mind-numbing-cold-weather situation again
Restaurant Info: Roti Boti
2709 21st Street at Astoria Blvd.
Astoria, NY 11102
“Like” Beauty and the Feast on Facebook
Follow Beauty and the Feast on Twitter