Wednesday, 27 January 2010

Is too much bulghur vulgar?

I am rubbish at predicting how much I/we can eat. My eyes are at least 14000 times bigger than my stomach and when I'm measuring out rice or pulses or grains, my imaginary stomach gets the better of me and I end up eating said grain for days on end, mostly because MCD won't eat grains or lentils - they're 'bitty' apparently. So for the record, the amounts given below make enough for 4 people, I think.

I was muttering on about what to do with the lamb chops I had defrosted yesterday - my thoughts naturally wander to the ras-el-hanout spice rub I posted about below - but I wanted something different. The BookSeller mentioned tandoori-style, which seemed to hit the mental spot. I made a paste out of 1 tsp garam masala, 1 tsp ground cumin, 1/2 tsp turmeric, 1 tsp and a bit of dried mint, 2 crushed cloves garlic, squeeze of lemon and 1/2 tsp chilli powder with some vegetable oil and rubbed it over the chops.

Leaving them to marinate, I cut a courgette into chunky half moons and tossed with olive oil and lemon juice and arranged in one half of a roast tin. I cut an aubergine into hearty chunks (really they shrivel down to nothing - you'll be amazed - like spinach) and tossed with honey, olive oil and chilli flakes (no, really - try it) and arranged in the other half of the roasting tin. They went into the oven for about 20-30 mins, depending, but watch the honey as it burns quicker than you think.

Put 1 cup bulghur wheat with 2 cups water in a pan, brought to a simmer and cooked for about 17 minutes, until all the water has been absorbed. Tip #1: don't add salt at this stage Tip#2: if you're cooking this for 1 and some leftovers, do halve the quantities.

Once the vegetables were bronzed, I mixed them through the bulghur wheat with a drizzle of olive oil and a couple of handfuls of rocket I had in the fridge - you could use spinach. I popped the lamb chops into a fierce oven for 5 minutes a side while I mixed a couple of spoonfuls of plain yoghurt with garlic, dried mint, a little lemon juice and some black pepper.

Assemble ingredients on plate and make sure you eat lamb chops with fingers as walls will get splattered with yellow-blotched yoghurt.

PS: Today's lunch is very much a reprisal. Tonight's dinner - sticky marinaded chicken wings - will also be accompanied by same. It is not at all helpful MCD has such an aversion to 'grainy' things....