Monday, April 28, 2008

Cooking Local and Wild

Braised Lamb Shank with Mint Gemolata and Braising Liquid, Sauteed Wild/Japanese Asparagus, and Ramp Risotto. Two hits, two misses. Shank and risotto, very good. Gemolata and wild asparagus, not so much. The gremolata, shown in progress below, with lemon zest, salt, mint (scavenged from the community garden), and a bit of olive oil was too citrusy. A little less zest and/or more mint and it may have worked.

As for the asparagus, bartered for at the Shaker Square Farmers Market, it wasn't for me. It tasted green and grassy to the point where I wasn't really sure it should be eaten. I had just sauteed it in olive oil with salt and pepper and added a little water to steam it at the end. They weren't to my liking. It may have just been me.

I also picked up the lamb shank and ramps at the Market. The lamb shank, also pictured below, came perfectly trimmed and looked great. First, I seasoned the shank with salt, pepper, and cumin and then browned it in olive oil. Then the shank was removed from the pot and some red wine was added and reduced. After the wine reduced in went a small can of tomatoes that I crushed somewhat with my hands. Once that was at a boil I seasoned with salt and pepper, added the shank back in, and then added some homemade veggie stock to come about halfway up the shank. The pot was then covered and placed in a 325 degree oven for about an hour and a half. After that the shank was removed from the liquid and kept warm in the turned off oven while the sauce was reduced down. Resting under the shank are some of the crushed tomatoes.

The ramp risotto recipe is not too different from this one. I used my usual method, substituting ramp bulbs and shallot for onion in the base saute. I also used the homemade veggie stock in place of the usual chicken stock. All that was was a bunch of old but still okay looking vegetables and mushrooms slowly boiled for about an hour and then strained. At the end I added some butter, cheese, and some chopped ramp tops.

That's it.


maybelles mom said...

This looks wonderful. I am a frequenter of this market too--it is a must every week.

The CFT said...

It is a great Market. And thanks for stopping by here.