Charlie is home for spring break and I have gone into Jewish mother overload. He has been home for all of an hour and I have asked at least 10,000 questions and have gotten about 2 responses that we not "yes" or "I don't know".
I just like to know what's going on. I'm not being nosy. Well, maybe a little bit, but I'm a mother. That's how we're built.
So besides asking too many questions, I am cooking. Charlie has always been a big fan of Mom's Home Cooking, so if I can't win him over with my sparkling conversation, I can certainly give it my best shot at the dinner table.
There's only one problem with this plan. I didn't read the instructions. I had planned a veritable Greek feast -- slow cooked lamb with lemon and oregano, potatoes roasted with the lamb, a composed Greek salad, and baklava -- but I neglected to actually read the recipe. All the way through. And pay attention to what I read.
The long and short of it is as follows:
1. This morning when I went to marinate the lamb, I found that the recipe called for 24 hours marinating time, not the paltry eight I had alloted.
2. Having cut myself short on the time, I was willing to forgo the 24 hours and fudge it with just eight.
3. At about 4:00 this afternoon, I preheated the oven to 350 in anticipation of 3 hours roasting time. What I did not realize was that three hours was not quite enough. As I finally read all the way through the recipe, I found that the lamb had to cook at various temperatures for over four hours. Yes, it had to cook for more than four hours. Pardon my French, but shit. Houston we have a problem.
4. Abort planned Greek feast. Reschedule for tomorrow.
5. A quick trip to Mark at the Shadyside Market produced four chicken breasts. I quickly whipped up Ina's lemon chicken, couscous with toasted pine nuts, green beans, and to top it all off, an apple cranberry cake. I realize that it's not cranberry season but beggars can't be choosers.
So, I'm going to do something I never do. I am going to give you the recipe for the roasted lemon leg of lamb even though I haven't made it yet. It sounds really good and you'll need some lead time to get this on the table.
I know this because I didn't read the instructions until it was too late.
Recipe: Slow Cooked Lamb with Lemon and Oregano
(Martha Stewart Living and Mad Hungry, April, 2012)
1 1/2 cups fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 heaping tablespoon dried oregano
1 1/2 cups water
1 leg of lamb (about 4 pounds)
Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 1/2 pounds Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and cut into big chunks
Combine lemon juice, oil, oregano, and water in a large nonreactive baking dish. Rub lamb all over with salt and pepper, and place in marinade, turning to coat well. Cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 24 hours, turning once or twice.
Preheat the oven to 350. Transfer lamb and marinade to a roasting pan. Cover lamb with parchment, and cover tightly with foil. Roast 1 hour, then flip lamb. Cover again, and reduce the heat to 300. Roast lamb 2 hours.
Flip lamb gently, since it will be very tender. Add potatoes to pan, and sprinkle with a little salt. Cover and roast 1 hour. Raise heat to 400. Uncover, and roast until potatoes are golden around the edges, 15 to 20 minutes.