Why not show your love this Valentine’s Day with a heartfelt meal made from scratch? This unique entrée and salad recipe may just have your loved one feeling as if he/she is dining at a five-star restaurant. Add a little romance and a glass of heart healthy, fine red wine, and you’ve got a recipe for a very Happy Valentine’s Day!
Rack of Lamb with Oranges, Almonds, Watercress, Skordalia
(This recipe takes 24 hours of prep time) Ingredients for the lamb:
4 racks of lamb
Zest of 2 lemons
4 sprigs fresh rosemary, leaves removed and roughly chopped
Pinch of sugar
1/4 cup blended oil
To make the lamb:
Preheat the oven to 275 degrees F.
In a small bowl, combine the lemon zest, chopped rosemary, salt (to taste), and sugar. Season the racks on both sides with this mixture and marinate for overnight before grilling. This will add more flavor to the lamb when it’s cooked.
Heat blended oil in an oven-safe sauté pan over medium heat. Add the seasoned racks to the pan, fat cap-side down, and sear until golden brown (about 3 to 5 minutes). Once the fat cap is golden brown, flip and place the whole pan into the oven until and cook until an instant-read thermometer, inserted into the thickest part of the lamb and not touching the bone, reaches 120 to 125 degrees for medium-rare (about 20 to 25 minutes).
It’s best to cook it low and slow to prevent that “bullet” from forming, where the middle is rare and the outside is well done.
When the lamb is done, remove it from the oven and let it rest for 5 minutes before cutting.
Ingredients for the Skordalia:
4 – 5 cups of cubed day-old bread with crusts removed,
2 cups whole milk
2 tbsp. blended oil
1 cup sliced almonds
1/2 cup sliced shallots
1/4 cup sliced garlic
2 cups extra-virgin olive oil
Juice of 1 lemon
To make the Skordalia:
Toast cubed bread into a 350 degree oven for 10 minutes.
Place the bread in a large bowl and cover with the milk, pressing the bread down to immerse it in milk. Set aside to soak.
Place a sauté pan over medium-high and heat the blended oil. Add the sliced almonds to toast, about 2 minutes. Once slightly toasted, remove about 1/4 cup of the oil and set aside for the salad.
In the same sauté pan add the shallots, sliced garlic, and season with salt. Toss to combine and allow the shallots and garlic to sweat. Once the shallots and garlic are fragrant, remove them from the heat.
Add the soaking bread to a blender, allowing any excess milk to drip out. Cover with the extra-virgin olive oil and add the toasted shallots, garlic, almonds, lemon juice, and salt, to taste. Blend the mixture until pureed and smooth like a paste. Taste and re-season, if needed
Ingredients for the lamb salad topper:
1 orange supreme, save the extra juice
2 cups trimmed Grower Pete’s watercress
Freshly ground black pepper
Extra-virgin olive oil
In a bowl, toss the orange supremes with the juice (collected when preparing the orange supremes), toasted almonds, salt, black pepper, and watercress. Drizzle with extra-virgin olive oil and toss to combine.
Putting it all together:
Slice the lamb into individual chops. Spoon the skordalia onto a plate. Top with the lamb chops and season each with salt. Garnish the lamb with the salad. Season with freshly ground black pepper and drizzle the plate with extra-virgin olive oil and the orange zest.
A Peachy and Cherry Salad
1 bunch of Grower Pete’s Organic Living Watercress, trimmed
½ cup cherries, pitted & halved
1 peach, sliced
⅓ cup alfalfa sprouts
Juice of 1 lime
2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
1 tbsp. agave
Salt & pepper, to taste
Arrange watercress, peaches, cherries and sprouts on two plates.
Whisk together lime juice, olive oil, agave, and salt & pepper in a small bowl and drizzle over salad before serving.
We recommend serving with a light-bodied Riesling wine.