I’m sitting outside a little cafe in Islington, with the dog asleep at my feet drinking some very lovely Fentiman’s Ginger Beer, trying to figure out where to begin with the last two weeks of work and life. I have been juggling designing wedding flowers, recipes and helping organise and working on ScandiFeast. What a wonderful weekend that was. I will be posting photos very shortly.
From time to time I am invited to foodie events. I try to pick and choose the ones which I feel I have a strong interest in. Also childcare is obviously a factor so if I am going to go out of an evening, it pretty much has to be something that I can justify forking out for childcare.
I was lucky enough to be invited to Cafe Spice Namaste to spend an evening with Cyrus Todiwalla. Now I am not going to turn that down! Cyrus and his wife are wonderful hosts. They always make you feel like you are eating in their home. Cyrus spent the evening demoing and feeding us Lamb dishes. He talked about the small hold farms where he sources the lamb from and we also met an Irish now farming in the midlands sheep farmer and he gave a brilliant talk about the typical day of a sheep farmer. You could tell he totally loved his work.
One of the things I learnt was that lamb sales were lower then chicken, pig and cow. Oh and also its a generation thing. If you are over 40 then you would quite easily make lamb your meat choice but the younger generations don’t know how to cook it! That I found weird. Shoulder of Lamb, rub with olive oil, garlic and rosemary, shove in the oven for a few hours…Dinner!
Cyrus made the most delicious canapés with cuts of the lamb that you wouldn’t necessarily choose. Lamb breast was so tender and delicious. Oh and he made burgers with lamb mince and stuffed a piece of blue cheese inside before frying. He also seasoned the lamb mince and invited us to eat, lamb tartare. I cannot explain how delicious the raw meat was. So sweet and perfectly seasoned. He flash fried in minutes cubes of simply spiced lamb loin. It was tender and pink and blew away any myths that lamb has to be cooked for a long time.
I left stuffed and vowing to quiz my butcher about all the different cuts he can supply.
I leave you with a Cyrus recipe for blue cheese stuffed lamb burger and also a diagram showing you all the different cuts of Lamb and how to cook them. I found it really useful I hope you do too. I’m heading off to get some cuts of Lamb for the BBQ tomorrow.
Have a great weekend!
BLUE CHEESE STUFFED LAMB BURGER
By Cyrus Todiwala
“Burgers might be an American invention or creation but the Kebab or Kavaab is very Indian, Persian, Turkish, Lebanese and so on. In India the burger would be actually a kebab of sorts.
I simply had to devise a burger with spices. It is simple to put together and just shows what you can do if you think just a little bit differently. So be brave and create – perhaps you will make many more combinations and bring out the best in the lamb you buy. Enjoy!”
Makes 6 burgers
- 675g lamb mince
- 1 finely chopped medium onion
- 2-3 cloves minced garlic 1 x 2inch piece minced fresh ginger
- 1 slender type minced green chilli (seeds included)
- 1 tbsp ground cumin powder
- 1½ tbsp ground coriander powder
- 2 tbsp tomato purée
- 3 heaped tbsp finely chopped fresh coriander
- 1 tsp Garam Masala powder
- 1-2 tsp salt
- 1 tsp crushed black pepper
For the Stuffing:
- 150g Blue cheese, crumbled
- 2 finely chopped green chillies
- 1 tbsp finely chopped fresh coriander
- 2 finely chopped cloves of garlic
- Rolls or bread, to serve
- In a large bowl gently mix all the burger ingredients together. Divide into 6 evenly–sized burgers.
- In a small bowl blend the stuffing ingredients together and shape into equal-sized balls to stuff the burgers.
- Make an indentation in the centre of each burger with your thumb and fill with a ball of the cheese. Make sure the cheese is completely encased when you form the burger.
- Cook on a prepared grill or barbecue for 6-8 minutes on each side or until any meat juices run clear.
- Serve with your favourite bread or rolls with some sliced tomatoes, onion and lettuce and some relish.
By Cyrus Todiwala 2015 for www.tastyeasylamb.co.uk