Happy 4th everyone! It's been a while since I've last had the grill out. Probably February or so.....I guess I'm getting a late start this year, but that's the great thing about San Diego, you can grill year round.
I've been enjoying Alan Wong's The Blue Tomato, which operated much like Thomas Keller's cookbook, giving us insight as to how dishes are developed and put together. Browsing through the book, one of the recipes caught my attention.... first, it was quite easy, second it sounded like something I'd like to eat..... Char Siu Lamb Chops. It's a riff on the classic Chinese BBQ Pork recipe and made on the grill. I've made Char Siu, so this wasn't much of a leap...and as a bonus, less messy than making it in the oven. This recipe uses ginger, garlic, and kecap manis. Sherry is used instead of Shaoxing wine. It was quite good. I made adjustments to taste, and since I used the very potent five-spice from QingDao I cut back a bit on that as well.
I simply mixed everything together and marinated overnight.
Of course I wasn't making 3 pounds of the stuff so that factored into everything as well. I also hedged my bets and made some simple Greek style lamb chops as well.
The most difficult part of the whole process was grilling the chops. Because of the sugar, you had to watch and move to ensure they didn't burn........two level grilling is a must.
Char Siu Lamb Chops
Makes 1 - 1 1/2 pound of Lamb Loin Chops
1 Cup Hoisin Sauce
1/2 Cup Sugar
1/4 Cup Honey
3 Tb Sherry
1 Tsp ginger juice (grate ginger then squeeze pulp)
2 cloves garlic grated
2 Tb soy sauce
2 Tb kecap manis
1 Tb Chinese Five Spice
- Mix ingredients together. Set aside 1/4 cup of marinade for basting.
- Marinate lamb chops in the fridge overnight.
- Bring to room temperature before grilling
I served the chops with some grilled shiitake mushrooms and bok choy which I basted with a mixture of soy sauce, oyster sauce, sugar, sambal olek, chili oil(the stuff I make at home), and sesame oil. I gotta work on my bok choy grilling technique... the leaves tend to burn too quickly. And no, I'm not soaking them in water as they turn out mushy.....
The lamb chops tasted good, but much of the gamey flavors were muted. The Missus thinks the marinade will work great for chicken; so maybe I'll do that next time. The Greek style chops tasted very good and were super tender.....
It was a nice way to start up grilling again.
While driving back from the market this morning I came across this in the middle of the intersection of Balboa and Clairemont Drive..... looks like a boat decided to fall off its trailer. I'm glad no one was hurt.