We have the world’s most sensitive smoke detector (add in the fact that it’s extremely old school and sounds like a classroom bell). This doesn’t really blend well with the fact that, while our vegetables are broiling (more on this later), I’m grading papers. And the grill won’t light. But anyways, on to the recipe. I always thought I’d hate lamb– too cute, too exotic– as a kid. I worked at a Lebanese restaurant where lamb was abundant, cleverly disguised as ground beef for gyros, and was hooked. It’s incredibly versatile (spicy, sweet, savory), and is surprisingly cheap (enough lamb chops to feed 3 people was $9, for a premium cut). It tastes deliciously exotic while being extremely simple to prepare– a little but of cumin, garlic, and curry and you’re on your way to faraway lands. This spiced recipe harolds the spicy gyro meat that most people are familiar with, which is a more comfortable introduction to a cut that makes most people a little wary.

To start, generously sprinkle lamb shoulder chops (shaped like hearts, bone-in) with cumin. Two chops is generally quite satiating for one person; most packages contain four. Then, add a little bit of garlic powder (maybe 1/4 tsp over both sides of chop) and indian curry powder (again, 1/4 tsp over both sides). Grill; lamb should be served medium-rare, this is about 140 degrees. For us, it took about 5 mins/side.

For sauce, take about 1/2 cup of plain yogurt, add some shaved cucumber (this is really to taste; about 1 tbsp is adequate) and 1/4 tsp of garlic powder; mix well.

For vegetables; cut whole baby portabella mushrooms in half; mix on foil-lined cookie sheet with 1 package of grape tomatoes and a very coarsely diced onion, all smothered in vinagerette dressing. Broil for about 8 minutes; the ends of the onion should be blackened. Serve with lamb, sauce, and some cous-cous, and you have an exotic dinner in about 20 minutes!

Now, I’m off to grade more papers, so enjoy your dinner!

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