A Greek Menu for FF* – R. Jehn

A Greek-Style Menu (29 May 2004)

This was a try at something interesting to celebrate a visit from Mom over the weekend. It turned out very well !!

For timing the meal: (1) prepare the lamb chop marinate to get the process going; (2) start cooking the beans; (3) while the beans cook, prepare the roasted feta dish, cover and refrigerate; (4) have a rest, then finish chopping other vegetables for the salad and set up the baking dish for the roasted tomatoes; (5) complete the menu by preheating the oven to 375° F. and roasting the lamb chops, tomatoes and feta while you mix the bean salad.

A Salad of White Beans and Vegetables

1/2 cup dried cannellini (or white navy) beans, rinsed
2 bay leaves and a teaspoon of oregano

Cover the beans with 2 inches water, add the herbs, and bring to a simmer. The beans will require 2-1/2 to 3 hours to become tender. Ensure the water never entirely evaporates in this process.

1/2 cup fresh Italian parsley, chopped
1/2 a large red onion, finely chopped
1 medium red pepper, chopped
1/4 medium poblano chile, finely chopped
1 tablespoon Coleman’s mustard powder
Juice of 1 to 1-1/2 lemons, strained
4 tablespoons capers
1/2 teaspoon cayenne chile powder
Salt and fresh-ground pepper to taste
Extra virgin olive oil

When the beans are tender, drain them well removing the bay leaves, place in a bowl and add the parsley, red onion, and two chopped peppers. Briefly toss. Emulsify the mustard powder in the lemon juice, then add all remaining ingredients excepting oil. Toss again to mix, then add just enough olive oil for your personal taste, tossing carefully once more. Serve with Kalamata olives and Daktyla on the side.

Marinated, Roasted Lamb Chops and Balsamic Tomatoes

Juice of 1 lemon, strained
1/3 cup olive oil
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon each, dried marjoram and oregano
1/2 tablespoon dried rosemary
2 thick-cut lamb chops

Whisk first 5 ingredients in a bowl large enough to accommodate chops, add chops, cover and refrigerate for 3 to 4 hours. When you’re ready, roast the chops for about 20 to 25 minutes at 375° F. to desired doneness.

2 large, ripe tomatoes, halved
Olive oil
Balsamic vinegar
Salt and pepper to taste

Lightly oil a small baking dish and add the tomatoes, cut side up. Just before you will roast them, drizzle a little balsamic vinegar on them, then season to taste. They should be roasted with the feta and chops for about 20 to 25 minutes at 375° F.

Spicy Roasted Feta

4 to 5 ounce block of feta cheese, sliced 1/4-inch thick
Olive oil to coat baking dish, plus a bit to drizzle
1/4 teaspoon cayenne chile powder
1/2 teaspoon pasilla chile powder
Dried oregano to taste
2 tablespoons fresh Italian parsley, chopped

Coat a small baking dish lightly with oil and lay cheese slices in it, then drizzle a bit more onto the cheese, followed by all the spices and herbs. Bake for 15 or 20 minutes at 375° F. until cheese is just beginning to melt.

Longtime friendships are the most important thing you have that makes your life worthwhile, excepting your Family. Value them as you would your life and the love of your life.

* FF = Foodie Friday

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