Easter Lamb Recipe with Couscous and Asparagus

In the spirit of Easter I'm featuring a great lamb recipe over at Artizone.  We used Martha Stewart's recipe for inspiration for both the lamb and the couscous.  I love the bright green color and flavors for this dish, it just screams "ALAS! Spring is here!!"

We only have about a week left before Wells and I embark on our Epic European Adventure 2011 and my excitement is in full force.  However, I somehow let Wells convince me that backpacking would be the way to go, that is until I saw the size of my bag -- " UHM...I can only fit like 2 pairs of shoes in there, like max." "Yes that's the point -- your tennis shoes, flip flops and one pair of heels, the end."  Obviously he's forgotten who he's about to marry because being the shoe addict that I am that was by far the silliest request I've ever heard.  A few pouts and whines later I convinced him to share half of his bag with me, bringing my total shoe count to now 5 pairs of shoes (He knows in the long run it'd be better for both of our sanities :)).

Time has been kicking my butt lately and I've barely been able to find time to cook, hence the recent shortage of recipes.  With Easter right around the corner I wanted to prep a dish that was simple, light but flavorful.  I love lamb because it's easy to make, satisfying to the soul and the bold flavors of the meat can leave you happily satisfied through just a couple chops.  I'm lucky to live in Dallas and be able to have services like Artizone available to me.  They are a newly launched grocery delivery service that offers products from the top culinary artisans in Dallas.  Head on over to the Artizone blog to find how to make the lamb recipe with complete pictures that show step-by-step instructions.  Don't forget to browse through all the other artisan goodies while you're there, I highly recommend the Triple Chocolate Truffle Cake from La Duni.

I am also digging this couscous recipe, originally the recipe called for quinoa but since I didn't have that readily available I simple found the next best substitute -- couscous!  I blanched some asparagus and together these sides paired perfectly with the hearty chops.  It's the perfect dish to serve to health-conscious guests or any guests with diabetic issues as it is rich in magnesium, selenium and fiber and low in fat and cholesterol.

Ingredients for Quinoa, Pea and Mint Salad (serves 4)

Prep Time: 10 minutes Total Cooking Time: 30 minutes

  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 1 cup couscous, rinsed
  • 1 cup shelled green peas or frozen peas
  • coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons fresh mint leaves, torn if large

Bring stock and quinoa to a boil in a 2-quart saucepan.  Reduce heat ot a simmer; cover and cook 10 minutes, then add peas.  Cook until quinoa is tender but still chewy and has absorbed the liquid, about 5 minutes more.  Remove from heat, and let stand, covered, 5 minutes.

Season with salt and pepper, then stir in the oil . Transfer to a serving bowl and let cool slightly (about 5 minutes) before gently stirring in the mint.  Serve salad warm or at room temperature.