Spiced Lamb Chops on Sautéed Pepper and Onions with Garlic and Mint Couscous
Serve with Indian Spiced Chickpea and Fire Roasted Tomato Soup.
Lamb and mint is a classic combo, but I play up the Mediterranean flavor by combining those two ingredients with spices like cumin and coriander. –RR
- 8 loin lamb chops
- Coarse salt and coarse black pepper
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin, (1/3 palmful)
- 2 teaspoons ground coriander, (1/3 palmful)
- 2 teaspoons sweet paprika, (1/3 palmful)
- 4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil (EVOO), divided
- 2 green bell peppers, seeded and cubed, 1-inch pieces
- 1 large yellow skinned onion, cubed, 1-inch pieces
- 1 cup grape tomatoes
- 1/2 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley, (a couple of handfuls)
- 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 3 tablespoons pine nuts
- 1 1/2 cups chicken stock
- 1 1/2 cups couscous
- 5-6 sprigs fresh mint, finely chopped, about 3 tablespoons
Cover the chops with waxed paper or plastic and whack each chop with the heel of your palm to flatten it out. Season chops with salt and pepper on both sides. Combine cumin, coriander and paprika and sprinkle the mixture evenly over chops. Pat the spices in place and wash up. Let chops stand 15 minutes.
Heat a large skillet over medium high heat. Add 2 tablespoons EVOO, 2 turns of the pan. Add peppers and onions. Season the vegetables with salt and pepper and cook together 5 minutes, then add grape tomatoes and continue to cook until skins begin to burst on tomatoes. Add half the flat-leaf parsley to the skillet and toss. Transfer vegetables to a platter and cover with loose foil to hold heat.
Place a tablespoon of EVOO in a small pot for couscous, just eyeball the amount. Heat oil over medium heat and add garlic. Sauté garlic 1 minute then add the pine nuts to toast a little. Add chicken stock to the pot and bring it up to a boil. Add couscous, remove from heat, and cover the pot. Let stand for 5 minutes.
Return skillet to stove and add another tablespoon EVOO, a turn of the pan. Add lamb chops to skillet and sear 2 to 3 minutes on each side for medium rare, cook 4 minutes on each side for medium well chops. Place chops on top of the peppers and onions.
Fluff couscous with a fork and stir in mint and the remaining parsley. Pass couscous at the table. It makes a nice bed for the veggies and lamb to catch all the juices.