My son loves his boss and it appears to be mutual. So our Thanksgiving gift from him was a huge, fresh bone-in roast lamb, all set to go. Lemon, garlic, and I think cumin as well as some onions. It was an amazing meal and it’s going to be another amazing meal today.
All I’ve done so far is cut up the remaining lamb into small pieces. We have all the rest of the makings for curry or lamb stew or maybe a bit of both. This is one meal of leftovers that might be better than the original.
WHAT TO DO WITH LEFTOVER LAMB
We had a lot of leftover lamb. I didn’t realize quite how much until I started to cut it up this morning. There was very little fat on it because it got trimmed yesterday. All the recipes required starting with raw meat, but this was cooked, so I winged it and it became a really great West Indian-style curry.
First, this curry was originally made with goat rather than lamb, but has been largely adapted for lamb or mutton. You can also make this with chicken or turkey — and I’m pretty sure there is a vegetarian version of it. Oh, you should save the gravy from the roast because it greatly improves this dish.
Cut up the lamb into cubes.
Cook 1-1/2 lbs. small potatoes (I nuke them) and cut them into pieces.
Cut up two big onions.
Soak 1-1/2 cups of raisins in hot water for ten minutes, then drain them. I used some big golden ones that are almost the size of apricots, but small ones will do fine and so will currants or dried cranberries — or , for that matter, fresh cranberries or tart apples. You can use more fruit if you like.
Curry powder – 1 – 2 tblspn
Cumin – 1 tblspn (unless you are a big fan of peppery food)
Garam marsala or coriander (be gentle with coriander — it bites) – 1 tablspn or less, to taste. I used the garam marsala because I have it in the kitchen.
Hot pepper (raw or dried) – to taste. I used 1/2 teaspoon.
Salt – about 1 tablespoon – or less.
Cinnamon – 1 tablespoon.
Ginger – 1 tablespoon.
Mace – 1 teaspoon.
Ground cloves – 1/2 teaspoon.
Minced garlic or two fresh cloves of garlic or powdered if you don’t have the fresh stuff.
Cardomom if you have it. (I didn’t.)
Ketchup or tomato sauce. If you use tomato sauce you will probably need to add sugar. I often use ketchup because it’s sweet and I don’t have to add sugar. If you don’t like the tomatoes, don’t use them. Some people don’t like them and the dish is fine without them — just different.
Butter and olive oil and/or ghee (clarified butter). I just use olive oil and a tablespoon of butter.
As much leftover gravy as you have available or if you don’t have any, chicken or beef broth.
You can add a vegetable if you like. I threw in some mushrooms. Some people add slices of lemon and you are supposed to add plain yogurt (NOT flavored!) at the end. I prefer sour cream, but it didn’t matter because I forgot to use it, so it’s still in the fridge.
COOKING THE LEFTOVERS
Add oil to a big heavy pot and add a big pat of butter. Add the onions and stir as needed. Add water if it gets dry. When the onions are caramelized (dark brown), add the potatoes and the dry spices. Add the ketchup or tomato sauce (or not). Stir and allow to get hot. Taste. Adjust spices. This is the moment where you have to decide how hot you want it. I don’t make things very hot because we all seem to have sensitive stomachs. Very hot (spicy) food doesn’t get eaten.
Add the gravy or broth. Stir. Add some water if it’s too thick. Taste again and adjust spices. Set it on medium low heat and leave it alone for 15 to 20 minutes. Come back, stir and if needed, add more liquid. Give it another 15 to 20 minutes.
It should be done. This is when you are supposed to add the yogurt (or if you’re me, sour cream). I forgot to add it. It was delicious and there’s an entire meal STILL leftover which went into the deep freeze. It can be frozen in a deep freeze for close to a year or in a regular freezer for a few months. Write on the container what is IN the container. You think you will remember, but I bet you won’t. It will just be a container of something. Oh, and it’s not a bad idea to put a date on it too.
This can be served with bread (na’an) or really any bread — or with rice — or just as is. We went with as is and we all ate as much as we could and we STILL had two full quarts remaining which has moved to the freezer.
NOTE: DO NOT feed the leftovers to your dog. The intensity of the garlic and onion is poison for dogs. We learned that the hard way last year, so this year, the poor Duke had to eat his own home-cooked dinner. Poor neglected pooch!
Categories: #Food, #Photography, #Recipes, Anecdote, Cooking, Holidays
That sounds like a huge lot of lamb you were given. Lucky you. Lamb costs a fortune now. We get a shoulder roast sometimes but not very often. Might get one for Christmas. We’ve started eating pork more often because it is cheaper.
I always write on things I put in the freezer, with a pencil, because the writing lasts longer.
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This was an amazing gift. I made dinner from it last night and there’s STILL another dinner left in the freezer. Owen’s friend when out today and found fresh turkey was reduced from whatever it was (a lot) to 39 cents/pound. We got a 12-lb. turkey for $4.50 cents, give or take a few pennies. That’s like a price from 20 years ago. NOTHING costs 39 cents a pound. Anyway, since he found the turkey, he bought stuffing and dinner rolls (the kind you heat up) and mashed potatoes and we still have a whole fresh thing of asparagus in the fridge, so it’s Thanksgiving all over again. If turkey didn’t dry out so much in the freezer, a second one would be nice — assuming we have room for it which is a big assumption. But they do dry out which is the whole point of buying a fresh turkey. Anyway, Arthur said all the rest of them were 19 or 20 pounds. Twelve pounds is two meals at least, so buying one that big is just wasteful.
Every once in a while for no reason, lamb goes on sale here. I bought one a month ago — a 10-pounder for about $12. We were going to eat it for Thanksgiving but them this amazing leg of lamb came our way. The Lebanese (Owen’s boss if from Lebanon) are almost as attached to lamb as Greeks who (last I knew) considered it the only meat worth eating. And Sarah preps it Lebanese-style. Since both Owen and I lived in the middle east, we really appreciate that spicing. Not only does it taste great, but oh the memories.
Overall, this has been a very foodie week. I’m still shocked at getting a 12-lb. turkey for less than $5. It’s a Thanksgiving miracle!
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What a marvelous holiday for our palates.
Imagine turkey as the backup for lamb.
We’re very fortunate.
It certainly is. I looked online to see how much turkey was going for here. I couldn’t find any fresh ones advertised but frozen turkey goes for between $7-11 a kilo for a whole turkey. I always found turkey a bit dry but sometimes we buy a frozen turkey breast for special occasions. That’s plenty for us and lasts a couple of meals. The last of it usually ends up in sandwiches. Americans seem to really like mashed potato. Naomi just returned from a Transpacific cruise and she commented that she hardly saw a baked or roasted potato in the main dining room. Meals were nearly always served with mashed potato. We love mashed potato too not with everything.
That turkey was THE best food buy in the past 20 years. Fresh turkeys — a recent introduction– are ENORMOUSLY better than frozen ones. They are normally very expensive so 39 cents a pound is a price I haven’t seen in decades. We took the carcass and made broth so tonight we’ve having lentil soup made from fresh turkey broth. We have really had an amazing week for food!
We eat more rice than mashed potatoes. Mashed are easier to make and go well with gravy, but Garry and Arthur are very fond of rice and I like it too. I have a rice cooker, so we make a LOT of rice and I buy good quality medium-short grain rice (it’s grown in California) in 15 pound bags. It’s more expensive then the standard long grain rice, but it’s tastes better and has a better texture.
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I like rice I used to make it a lot before I moved in with Naomi. She’ll eat it but she’s not mad on it so we don’t have it as often.