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Lamb in the Summer. Sure, Why Not?
I'm kind of over this whole “having to actually plan every single thing I eat” business. Back in the Before Times, I was fortunate enough to get breakfast and lunch in my fully-stocked work cafeteria, or step outside the door and choose from any one of 47 spots to pick up a hipster grain bowl or salad. Now I have to actually...menu plan everything. And cook everything myself.
My Gawd, is this how other people have always lived?!
And sure I could GrubSeamDash everything, but those fees add up quick.
I’ve done the rounds of Blue Apron and those meal kits, but while I’m not wasting food with those, each item comes packaged in a plastic bag. So now I’m killing the environment. I've got more #4 and #5 plastic in a box in my garage than there is in the Pacific Ocean.
So I’ve opted for another service, PlateJoy. You tell it what you want to eat, how many meals and servings you need, and it generates a menu plan and a shopping list for you. This is what I need right now. I think all day (though some of my colleagues may challenge that assertion), I just don’t have the brain power to think about food plans too.
Their first batch meal suggestion was a slow cooker braise of lamb chops and vegetables. Lamb in the summer? It's always been a fall/winter dish to me. But sure, let’s give it a whirl.
I browned the chops, sautéed the veggies in the pan, put the whole thing in the slow cooker and let it chug away. Within 30 minutes, excellent aromas began to emanate from my kitchen. Bonus: the slow cooker didn’t heat up the house on a 90°+F degree day.
Naturally the next important question is: what to drink with this dish? The classic pairing is something French and rustic. I chose a 2016 Louis Latour Beaujolais-Villages Chameroy. The grape is gamay, a lighter-bodied red with lots of acidity. Acidity equals a high level of food-friendliness. I often recommend gamay around Thanksgiving.
Cherry and slightly mushroomy on the palate, nice texture. Be sure to chill it for a little while, to bring out the bright freshness and improve the finish.
Also, parsnips, everybody! Why aren’t we eating more parsnips. They are freakin’ delicious.
Great meal that I didn't have to think too hard about, and a really good wine. I’m a fan of anything that’s going to make my life easier. Let me know what you’re corona cooking, and pairing!