Despite the title of this entry, the following recipe lacks all things LAMB in its ingredients. In fact, it is modeled off of a recipe featuring pancetta inspired by one of the entries in the LCBO's winter issue.
The crucial component of this pasta dish: Fresh baby spinach.
The complex array of colours in the pan belies the simplicity of this dish. I am a huge proponent of interpretation and instinct when cooking (one of the reasons why I love Jamie Oliver, who also encourages departing from a strict recipe).
To illustrate, I chose Farfalle (at the behest of my sister) over Orrechiette pasta and substituted chick peas with more fresh vegetable ingredients--mushrooms (my favourite!), red peppers, and I added extra carrots to enhance the sweetness of the dish. Following the preference of my family, I opted for a bit more of a 'tomatoe-y' sauce (used some diced roma's as well as cherry tomatoes), rather than an olive oil based sauce. Finally, I used chorizo sausage rather than pancetta.
Warm Zucchini Side Salad, seasoned with a lemon, olive oil, chili & fresh cilantro dressing
This warm salad served as a lovely accompaniment to a meal comprised of broiled marinated lamb chops, couscous, and Horiatiki salad.
I followed the recipe quite closely, although, as usual, I used more garlic than was called for and sprinkled the chili's quite generously. **Crucially, I also substituted mint for cilantro** Although mint definitely complements lamb, I feel that using the cilantro enhanced the Mediterranean/middle eastern theme of the meal. Plus, to be honest, I prefer cilantro over mint any day! :)
Marinated Lamb Chops
Again, this recipe lays everything out quite easily and the results are fabulous!
I enjoy research; for academic purposes, purely social--ie related to music, cooking, fashion, etc. You name it, I want to know the crucial who's, what's, where's, when's, why's, and how's of its existence.
Accordingly, I found out as much as I could about Horiatiki salad and how it has been reinterpreted over the years owing primarily to globalization & all that jazz. I've enjoyed this recipe for years, but now I can also understand the roots of the flavours I have come to love. And that, my friends, is pretty neat if you ask me. My meal has become a history lesson; *sigh*, ever the perpetual student of history and international relations :).
Various interpretations of Horiatiki salad, infused with a little history, too!