Friday, January 17, 2014

Pasta with Abruzzi-Style Lamb Sauce

Once again, it's time to play, hey, what's lurking in freezer?! I am not a fan of keeping anything in the freezer longer than 6 months. I often refer to this chart when SP & I have different opinions on how long we can keep food!

This time we discovered the very thin lamb shoulder chops that SP bought last August. He grilled some of them but then froze the rest. It's time to thaw and cook them.
I didn't want the lamb chops baked or grilled because they are so thin I thought they would get too tough and dry, especially on leftover nights. Sometimes reheating isn't kind to leftovers. I wanted a sauce for cooking & reheating. We were already busy braising something else so I didn't want to braise the lamb. Then I remembered a Lamb Ragu we made once and suggested that to SP. He agreed. For reference, we decided to consult the recipe we used for the Lamb Ragu, which we made 3-4 years ago. That's when we came across a recipe for Pasta with Abruzzi-Style Lamb Sauce from Food & Wine. Mmmm. Pasta plus sauce with lamb and this:
Pancetta. Sold. Soon the house started to smell delicious - sauteed onions and pancetta:
Then the rosemary and lamb, which SP trimmed from the bone and cut into tiny cubes:
He added the bones for extra flavor:
Tomato & wine goodness added in:
Simmering away:
Once the sauce was done, SP fished out the lamb bones. We decided to use penne and cooked half a box to mix with the sauce and parmesan.

This was delicious! The sauce was really flavorful thanks to the salty pancetta and the lamb bones. The tiny cubes of lamb were moist, not tough and leathery. We got 2 meals out of this dish - the leftovers fit perfectly into one of our glass containers:
This is definitely a 'make again' dish - which is good because we have two more of these thin lamb chops in the freezer and we will need to use them by March. Plus, this is a very easy and fairly quick dish to make. The most time consuming/difficult part is cubing all the meat.
Recipe from Food & Wine here.

Notes: We used 3 oz pancetta, dried rosemary, half a box penne, parmesan, and a can of crushed tomatoes since that's what we had one hand. Our lamb was about a pound, including bone.

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