Marinated and Griddled Lamb Chops with Pea Risotto Recipe
My New Year Resolution
Day 1 - Healthy Eating Plan
Well after all the over-indulgence that Christmas inevitably brings and a realisation that vegetables and fruit had taken a bit of a backward step from our plates I decided that my 2012 New Year resolution would be to take control over and make my family meals much healthier and lower in fat. Please bookmark or subscribe to this hub and revisit as often as possible because it's going to be an ongoing project, I will be adding more and more recipes, ideas and photographs from each day's meals and letting you know what we've found a success or a failure. My daughter has shown an interest in joining me along the way and hopefully in a short time our bodies will benefit, and there's always the added plus that we're hoping to find some luscious meals along the way and lose some of that Christmas chocolate that seems to have set up permanent residence on my body.
1 - 2 - 3 - 4...
I DECLARE A FAT WAR!
This eating plan is NOT about cutting down on food, heaven forbid, the idea of starving your body is not one that appeals to me, and quite frankly I can't think that it can be good for you, you would be losing vital minerals and vitamins and suffering at the same time.
Other Books by Judith Wills
I am basing our plan on an old book that I bought many many years ago called Fat Attack by Judith Wills, I know that it's no longer in print but you can still purchase old copies of it on Ebay last time I checked. However she has written books since and on the right are a few available at Amazon if you are interested.
The original Fat Attack book includes lots of recipes although I find that nowadays the plan needs a bit of 'jooshing' as there is a lot of 'meat, potatoes and two veg' going on so although we're using it as a guide I will be stepping things up a little bit.
One of the benefits of today's supermarkets is the variety of vegetables and fruit that we now have access to and the variety of low-fat, non-fat things that we can enhance the plan with, including non-fat yoghurt ice-cream - bliss in a bowl - but don't forget that these things may still contain calories and should be eaten in moderation.
My daughter and I have been on this plan for about a week so far and we are not only finding that we feel better, we are losing a little weight, (I lost 3lbs this week), amazingly we are eating more food than we did before, and our general happiness/mood levels are definitely on the up. Obviously I've only just started the hub and I didn't photograph our meals so far, so I will start today with you as if it's Day One, and will repeat the recipes we've missed at the end, this plan is a 30 Day healthy eating plan.
And just incase anyone thinks that my daughter shouldn't be participating in this, don't worry she won't be doing the whole fat free theme, as a growing child I am aware that she needs dairy intake to keep her healthy so she will be having an appropriate dairy intake for her age, BUT she will benefit from the rise in the quantities of vegetables and fruit that is going to happen. I would love to hear your comments as we go forward with this and if you'd like to join us, please make regular contact and let me know how you're doing, so without further ado here is today's food plan.
Fat Free Danone Activia Cherry Yoghurt mixed with 30 grams of Co-operative Low Fat Rice and Wheat Cereal
plus 1 large Jaffa Orange
Comment: This is a new cereal for us to try and it's very similar to Kellog's Special K, just as nice and about a half the price if not less - definitely going to keep buying this one.
1 Bread Roll thinly spread with Flora Light, add 50g Tuna (in Brine) with wafer thin slices of Cucumber, Yellow Pepper, Lettuce, Rocket and 2 teaspoons of Hellman's Lighter Than Light Mayonnaise.
1 large Waitrose Rocha Pear - highly recommended; Buttery, sweet and juicy
Comment: It's lunchtime and I've had 2 fruits and and 4 salad items (in the past I would have been lucky to have that in a whole day - sad but true. The roll was delicious, the crunch and sweetness that the yellow pepper provided a major plus, and despite the fact that I don't normally like margarine or vegetable spreads I couldn't taste it because of the Hellman's Lighter than Light Mayonnaise which was surprisingly good and of course all the yummy ingredients. I was surprised at how much tuna I could have, normally I think I would have had less tuna and more full fat mayonnaise and therein lies one of my old problems. The great things was that the roll tasted of tuna and salad and not just mayonnaise.
I would highly recommend the Rocha Pear from Waitrose it was buttery, sweet and juicy - definitely buying those again.
DINNER - GRIDDLED MARINATED LAMB CHOPS WITH PEA RISOTTO
4 Organic Lamb Chops (2 per person)
1 Organic Garlic Cloves, peeled and crushed
Juice and zest of half an Unwaxed Lemon
75ml Olive Oil
1/2 tsp of Dried Mint or 4-5 leaves of fresh Mint, finely chopped
1 tsp Dried Rosemary or a couple of sprigs of fresh Rosemary
If you're using the dried Rosemary keep a look out for the Wild Rosemary version, for me it seems to have a much deeper, fuller flavour, and of course if you have some fresh Rosemary and Mint in the garden then get out there and snip some off there's nothing nicer than fresh herbs.
Tonight I'm just cooking for my daughter and I so the ingredients above are to serve 2 people, this is a very easy no fuss way to prepare the lamb chops.
To the Olive Oil add the lemon juice, zest, crushed garlic, rosemary and mint.
Place the lamb chops in a plastic bag or a bowl and pour over the olive oil.
If using the bag; seal the bag and squish it all around to make sure that the chops are thoroughly coated in the marinade, be careful not to squeeze too hard as the bones are quite sharp and might make holes in the bag.
If using the bowl; get your hands in there and rub the lamb chops all over in the marinade, wash your hands and then using clingfilm seal the bowl.
Put the lamb in the fridge for 6 hours or ideally overnight.
Pea Risotto Ingredients:
1 tablespoon of Butter
½ Organic White Onion, very finely chopped
1 Organic Garlic Clove, peeled and crushed
½ cup of Arborio/Paella Rice
1¼-1½ cups of Vegetable, Chicken or Fish Stock
¼ cup of Extra Dry Vermouth or Dry White Wine
½ cup of Fresh or Frozen Peas
A splash of Olive Oil or Garlic Oil
Remember to take your lamb out of the fridge and bring back to room temperature before you start cooking.
- Melt the butter and a splash of olive oil (or the garlic oil if you are using that) in a large frying pan.
- Add the onions and garlic and cook on a very low heat for approximately 15 minutes without colouring the onions.
- When the onions and garlic are cooked turn up the heat and add the rice, stirring to coat them in the butter, after about a minute the rice will start to look slightly translucent.
- Now you add a half cup of vermouth or white wine and stir until it is absorbed, the alcohol will evaporate leaving your rice with a lovely flavour and a great smell.
- Add your a half a cup of hot stock and some salt, turn down your heat to gentle simmer so that the rice will have time to cook and absorb the liquid. Each time you add stock stir until the rice has absorbed all the liquid before adding more.
- This process will take roughly 15 minutes, check to see if your rice is cooked, if you want the rice softer then add a little more hot stock (you can add hot water if you run out of stock) until you get the consistency you are looking for.
- Check your seasoning.
- Now is the time to start heating your griddle so that it's ready to cook the lamb chops.
- Add the peas to your rice and cook for a further 2-3 minutes.
- Cover with a lid and turn off the heat.
When ready to cook, bring the lamb back to room temperature, season with freshly ground salt and pepper and place on a hot griddle for 3-4 minutes per side, adjust the cooking time to suit your particular tastes. I don't believe that meat should be served a certain way, I believe you should eat things the way you want to eat them, so if you like it rare or you like it well done, these will still taste superb.
Comment: These lamb chops were delicious, loved the mint and the crunchy rosemary still attached to the meat after being grilled/griddled, this marinade would be great on a BBQ next Summer. Will definitely be doing these chops again. The pea risotto had a creamy light fresh taste, might try a squeeze of lemon juice and maybe some of the mint next time I'm making it.