Friday, July 22, 2016

Lamb Blade Steak di Asti with Buttered Farfalle Pasta

     A Italian Asti Region Style Osso Bucco Recipe Adapted For Lamb!
     Asti style Veal Osso Bucco is braised till it is tender, yet it is incredibly light on the palate.  Asti Style Osso Bucco is slowly braised with soffritto vegetables, crisp dry white wine, sage and plenty of lemon.  As one can imagine, this Asti specialty can be served any season.
     Lamb Blade Steaks benefit from braising too.  Most braised lamb recipes require a heavy rich dark braising sauce.  A good lamb steak really does not need to be smothered with a rich sauce to cover the slightly strong flavor of the meat.  A light acidic Asti style braising sauce not only mellows the lamb flavor, it helps to tenderize the meat.  The result is a very pleasant lamb steak entrée that actually is light enough on the palate to raise some eyebrows!
     Lamb Shoulder Steaks (Lamb Blade Steaks) are usually sold for a thrifty price, because the weight is about 45% bone and there is usually a thick fat cap.  One section of the Lamb Steak meat can be rather tough if it is not braised.  Lamb Shoulder Steaks are rarely served in fine restaurants and they are primarily served a home cooked meal.  This qualifies today's Asti style Lamb Steak as comfort food, while the traditional Veal Osso Bucco di Asti is a classic entrée that often is served in fine dining restaurants.

     Lamb Blade Steak di Asti:
     This recipe yields 1 hearty entrée.  
     Step 1:  Select 10 ounce lamb shoulder blade steak.
     Trim the excess outer fat cap, so it is about 1/4" thick.
     Lightly season with sea salt and white pepper.
     Step 2:  Heat a wide sauteuse pan (a deep sauté pan for braising) over medium heat.
     Add 1/2 tablespoon of pomace olive oil.
     Add 1 tablespoon of unsalted butter.
     Place the lamb steak in the pan.
     Sear the lamb on both sides, till it is lightly browned.
     Step 3:  Add 2 cloves of minced garlic
     Add 1/4 cup of diced carrot.
     Add 1/4 cup of diced onion.
     Add 1/4 cup of diced celery.
     Briefly sauté and stir the soffritto vegetables till they become aromatic.  (About 1 minute.  Do not allow the vegetables brown!)
     Step 4:  Remove the pan from the heat.
     Add 1/2 cup of dry white wine.  (An acidic Pinot Grigio is a good choice.)
     Add the juice of one lemon.
     Add just enough water to barely cover the lamb steak.
     Add 4 or 5 fresh sage leaves.
     Add 1 bay leaf.
     Add 1 pinch of sea salt and white pepper.
     Step 5:  Place the pan in a 300ºF oven.  (Do not cover the pan.)
     Slowly braise the lamb steak in the oven.
     Flip the lamb steak in braising liquid occasionally.
     Braise till the vegetables and lamb are cooked tender.  Allow the broth to reduce by half and only add water if necessary.

     Buttered Farfalle Pasta:
     This recipe yields 1 portion.
     Buttered pasta is nice with this Asti style Lamb Steak entrée.  While the lamb steak is braising, the Farfalle Pasta can be cooked.  Wait till about 15 minutes before the Lamb Steak is ready, to cook the pasta.
     Step 1:  Cook 1 small portion of Farfalle Pasta in boiling water till the pasta is cooked al dente.
     Drain the water off of the pasta.
     Step 2:  Return the pasta to the warm pot.
     Add 1 1/2 tablespoons of unsalted butter.
     Season the pasta with sea salt and cracked black pepper.
     Gently stir and toss till the butter melts.
     Keep the pasta warm on a stove top.
     Lamb Blade Steak di Asti with Buttered Farfalle Pasta:
     This recipe describes 1 entrée presentation.  
     Step 1:  Remove the braising pan from the oven.
     Add 1/2 teaspoon of lemon juice to freshen the flavor.
     Step 2:  Remove the sage leaves.
     Set the bay leaf aside.
     Step 3:  Place a portion of Buttered Farfalle Pasta on the back half of the plate.
     Place the lamb steak on the front half of the plate.
     Step 4:  Spoon the braised soffritto vegetables on the plate around the lamb steak.
     Spoon a generous amount of the thin braising sauce over the lamb and onto the plate.
     Garnish the lamb steak with thin lemon wedges and the reserved cooked bay leaf.
     Rarely is a braised lamb steak described as being light and lemony!

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