Wednesday, 25 June 2014

Food, Music, Food, Music, Food, Music... Ad Infinitum


Normally I use this section to post recipes by the likes of Nigel Slater and Yotam Ottolenghi. Tonight I'm competing against them. The photo you see above is of a dish I have been cooking every Friday evening for the last few weeks. It's spicy lamb with rice. What I love about this recipe is how simple and filling it is. I have my own method and, obviously, if you are a veggie, I recommend an alternative, like Linda McCartney sausages. In fact, my next instalment of Food, Music, Food, Music, Food Music... Ad Infinitum, will be of a vegetarian sausage hotpot. Again, I will add my own twist.

With this spicy lamb, what I do first is marinate the meat. I leave it overnight with mashed garlic, plenty of black pepper, salt and chopped up red, hot mixed chillies (I also leave one or two chillies unseeded to give the recipe that extra hotness. What I like doing as well is mashing the garlic and chillies together so as to make a lumpy mix). Brown some onions on the pan. Add in oregano, mixed herbs, cumin, coriander, turmeric and a couple of bay leaves and toss most of the chillies and garlic onto the hot pan. The garlic and chillies will cook faster than the other ingredients so make sure you put the meat in before they burn. I buy diced lamb because it cooks better and evenly. I let it stew in its own juice, stirring it every couple of minutes or so. As readers of this section know I am an advocate of slow cooking and this recipe is no exception, Make sure that the meat is nice and tender. Then, when the gravy begins to dry up a bit, add in the rice. The way I have been cooking rice for the last year or so is the Cuban way which makes the grain loose and soft. I use a small wine glass to measure the amount of rice to be cooked. The important thing is to use exactly the same amount of water, too. So, three quarters of a wine glass (for one person) correspond to three quarters of water. I turned the heat down (number one or two if you have an electric cooker) and let the rice cook until it absorbs all the water. The result? See above again. My Friday evening dinner.

The music I have selected for tonight's section is in tandem with a very important tournament taking place now. No, not Wimbledon, my dear friend, but the Football World Cup in Brazil. So, we start with the Southamerican giant and a timeless number. I hope Neymar and co. can take some inspiration from João Gilberto's Aquarela do Brasil. It's not just the way Brazilians play, it's the way they marinate their football.



The Anglo contribution representing USA, Australia, Nigeria and England (which at the time of writing has sadly crashed out of the World Cup early ) comes from a female vocalist who was born in Ohio and has lived in Blighty for many years. Whoever said that Chrissie Hynde or The Pretenders symbolise "middle of the road" has never heard...  Middle Of The Road. Beautiful, like my recipe (sorry for the lack of modesty)



A Paris-based musical troupe that plays tango (representing Aregntina) is my next offering. Who knows? It could be the final in the World Cup on Sunday 13th July. In the meantime, have a first listen to Gotan's latest release, La Gloria. It reminds me of the tenderness of the lamb I cooked last Friday.



We round up tonight with a little number from Ghana. As I write the Black Stars are in with a chance, although remote. Let's hope they can go through, even if it means upsetting my Portuguese friends. Oh, well, you can never please everybody. In the meantime, enjoy Azonto by Fuse ODG feauring. Tiffany. Spicy.



Next  Post: "Sunday Mornings: Coffee, Reflections and Music", to be posted on Sunday 29th June at 10am (GMT)

24 comments:

  1. My vegetarian self is not a fan of meat substitutes either - but the carnivore I share my life with would love this.
    And garlic, chilli and cummin make most things better.

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  2. Meat substitutes are nasty. Well I've heard one out of the songs at least, a record for me I think haha

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  3. Wow Gotan project is amazing, I hadn't seen them before! what style!

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  4. I'm looking forward to see what you do with veggie sausages (I'm not a meat eater), though marinated football sounds inviting ...

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  5. You have a right to be proud of your cooking. I felt the juices start to run as I read the procedure... literally mouth watering.

    For some strange reason I have lost interest in the World Cup...grins... thank goodness for Wimbledon to (hopefully) save the day.

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  6. Oh my gosh meat substitutes are horrible. But then again I'm a full-fledged carnivore :)

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  7. I no longer touch meat after some of the reports about abattoir and slaughter-house horrors. But I am hoping next week's veggie dish is going to be as good as this lamb dish looked.

    And that Argy Tango clip is just superb. I love this dance music.

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  8. I'm not a big fan of lamb but my husband is. I'll show him the recipe -thanks! Amazing dancers. I've never seen sand used as part of the choreography.

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  9. Garlic and chilli...wow...I am totally hooked...:)

    Happy Thursday!

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  10. Many thanks for your kind comments. Sorry for the typos. There were lots of them! :-)

    Ghana sadly crashed out of the World Cup today. USA is still in, though. And the Argies. And the Cariocas. And have your heard of Los Ticos? With Mexico, Costa Rica, Uruguay, Colombia and Chile, this could be Latin America's year.

    Greetings from London.

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  11. oh my goodness... i'm getting hungry... can i come over for dinner? smiles

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  12. Tu plato debe de estar muy bueno todo lo que se deja en adobo coge sus sabores.
    Un abrazo y disfruta del arroz.

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  13. nice...great eclectic mix on the music....and that dish sounds wonderful...love that you leave an unseeded chile in there...i like my heat...smiles.

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  14. I do love lamb and rice! It looks really good! Greetings from Montreal, Canada.

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  15. Yum with your cooking. No one here likes spice so I have to live in my imagination with creations like yours.

    Having never played soccer, but with kids who do, I had to learn the rules and understand the game. I have watched lots of the World Cup this time around and have grown to admire the players skill and the passion of fans worldwide.

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  16. Looks delicious - and I do love soya sausages, which would make this a nice veggie dish.

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  17. Great recipe!
    A suggestion: I tried the recipe, but divided in two: One was just as you said, and the other I did a small change: Instead of using the fresh chilli, I used dried "serrano" chilli (very common here in Mexico, possible to find it in USA and Spain). The dried "serrano" chilli fried was entire along with the garlic, and the point of frying it's important: just brown it a little, otherwise will be too hot.

    The advantage of using the dried chilli is that there is an Indian/Thai version of it, that is not really hot, but very tasty. I know that it's possible to find it in UK because it was there where I discover it when I lived in London for a year. You can find it in the Indian/Thai food markets. It is just like this:
    http://i01.i.aliimg.com/photo/v0/154377851/RED_CHILLE_DRY_CHILLI_INDIAN_SANNAM_334.jpg

    About the taste of your dish with fresh or dried peppers, well, it's up to a personal taste. Use the one you like it more!
    Best regards, my friend....

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  18. I will admit I have never tried lamb. I always picture lamb chops (yes I know shes a sock) and I just can't do it. But this really sounds sorta good...

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  19. I am going to try your lamb recipe and also as a veggie one. Thank you for sharing.

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  20. Gracias. Ya la tengo guardada y procuraré hacerla en breve.
    De fútbol paso. Pero que gane el mejor.

    Saludos

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  21. That dish looks delicious. I don't think I've ever eaten lamb. I had a dog once that could only eat lamb and until we got his canned dog food in, I had to buy real lamb in the grocery store and mix it with rice. It smelled good while I was cooking it but I never tried it.

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  22. Thanks for your comments. I had this dish again last night but I replaced the lamb with beef. Still, it tasted delicious! :-)

    Greetings from London.

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  23. Very tasty cooking tips! I always thought rice was cooked that way, is there another way?

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