Cooking the lamb chops:
• Cook the lamb chops in a pressure cooker or deep pan.
• Add vinegar and water, enough for the chops to be covered completely.
• Mix ginger, garlic and salt with the meat and allow it to cook until it is cooked inside out.
• Add 1 tbsp of oil and fry the cooked lamb chops for two to three minutes.
• Once the chops have been fried, remove them from the stove and let them rest for five to 10 minutes.
Note: The cooking time varies, depending upon the quality of the meat being used. The aim is to cook it until it becomes tender. You may add more water if needed but be careful not to overcook the chops lest they become rubbery. The water should have dried out completely by the end.
Coating and frying the lamb chops:
• Prepare the coating by blending leftover bread and corn flakes in a food processor. Place the crumbs onto a flat plate and spread them out evenly.
• In a small bowl, beat two eggs and add salt and pepper to the mixture.
• Dip each chop in the egg and coat it with the crumbs, making sure all sides are covered completely.
• Once the chops have been coated, fry them on medium heat until they become golden-brown in colour. Remember that the chops are already cooked so you only need to fry them just enough to let the colour of the crumbs change.
• Serve the chops warm with a side of salad or potato wedges.
Tips for purchasing the right lamb chops
In general, lamb chops can vary in flavour and tenderness a great deal, depending on the part of the lamb which they have been cut from. This might include the shoulder, ribs, loins or legs.
Chops are usually sold with the bone and in a clear pink to red colour. Dark purple or deep red meat indicate less tenderness and a relatively stronger flavour, which is more suitable for highly seasoned and time-consuming recipes. The most tender and expensive chops usually come from the ribs or loins and should be cooked quickly, preferably using dry heat methods like grilling. These should also be at least one inch in thickness. A word of warning though: you must be careful not to overcook the chops lest they become dry, tasteless and slightly grey in shade. A little bit of the pink hue should remain even after the meat has been cooked. Also, it is advisable not to marinate rib or loin chops for too long as exposure to acids can cause the meat to become mushy.
In comparison, shoulder chops are less tender, cheaper and although they contain more fat, the shoulder muscles have several ‘sections’ which make the chop appear slightly odd. If you still prefer these, you can tenderise the meat by marinating or cooking on the stove but shoulder chops are best baked or simmered, as in a curry. Leg chops are the largest and meatiest variety of chops and are great for grilling or broiling as well.
Microwavable Potato Wedges
Nothing compliments a hearty meat dish like a good serving of veggies to go with it. Try this recipe for crispy potato wedges that taste just like baked potatoes but can be prepared in the microwave. Addiction guaranteed!
• Medium-sized baking potato (unpeeled) 1
• Parmesan cheese (grated) 1 tsp
• Vegetable oil 1 tsp
• Paprika 1/4 tsp
• Salt to taste
• Cut the potato into eight, long wedges and place the pieces onto a flat plate.
• Coat the wedges with the paprika, salt, oil and seasoning and cook them in the microwave for about four to six minutes on high heat.
• Turn the wedges around once in between to make sure all sides are cooked.
• Once done, sprinkle parmesan cheese onto the warm potatoes and serve immediately.
Published in The Express Tribune, Ms T, February 1st, 2015.
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