Bruce's Blog

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If I were talking about a jazz musician’s chops, I would be referring to his technique, as in, “Man, that cat has some amazing chops!  Listen to him blow!”.   Marcella often makes the point that she is not a fancy cook and that her recipes, for the most part, require very little technique.   For her, taste is foremost.  If you can do something fancy to make the presentation nice, go for it — but not at the expense of the taste.

Last night I made  a dish which demonstrates this quite eloquently,  Marcella’s Lamb Chops Calabria Style with Tomatoes, Peppers, and Olives from Marcella Says…. What a delight!

The sauce cooking. Sorry about the poor quality of the photo…

Recently I’ve been realizing that I’ve been too shy in the past in regards to getting the pan really hot, and I made sure it was screechingly hot before browning the lamb chops, because I wanted them good and brown on the outside but still what Marcella and Victor call “a moist, flaming pink” on the inside. The smell in the kitchen just five seconds after the chops went into the pan was incredible. Marcella describes this as a recipe that “starts out as two before becoming one”. After the chops are browned (I cooked them less than 2 minutes per side) you remove them and start making a sauce. I didn’t even let the pan cool before putting in some onions to brown. The onions also gave off a wonderful aroma as they absorbed the fat from the chops and browned. Then you add some canned imported Italian San Marzano tomatoes, which cooks about five minutes, still at pretty high heat. Then you add some bell peppers, parsely, chopped green onions and black pepper and cook for another 8 minutes or so at a reduced heat. Then throw the chops in with the sauce and turn them over in the sauce for about a minute. Wonderful stuff!

Categories: Cooking

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