Dear readers, I promised you easy, tasty, weeknight dinners. And I gave you parmesan custard and cucumber mint lemonade cocktails. For those, I apologize. Don’t get me wrong, they are fantastic for a leisurely weekend cocktail hour. The best, maybe. But easy and weeknight, they are not.
Weeknight is a good cut of meat and a throw-together topping that you first call a mint sauce until The Boyfriend announces that he doesn’t think he likes mint sauce and so somewhere between the food processor and the table it is rechristened mint chimichurri. It’s something that can go with a little roasted asparagus and some crispy smashed purple potatoes and all be done with and ready in about an hour.* That’s this one! Finally following through on my promise. Sorry for the delay.
Also, this mint chimichurri is awesome. It’s tangy and briny, but fresh and herby. A perfect compliment to lamb that’s just a little game-y and pan-seared to a perfect medium rare. Seared so it’s a little crunchy on the outside and meltingly tender in the middle.
- 1 T. vegetable oil
- ¾ lb. lamb chop
- Lemon wedges, for serving
- 1 c. fresh mint (I used a whole one of those fresh herb cellophane packs from the supermarket)
- 1 bunch fresh parsley
- 16 cornichons
- 2 T. capers
- 2 T. balsamic vinegar
- Salt, pepper and sugar in pinches
- Heat a cast iron skillet with vegetable oil over medium heat. Run a little tap water over your fingers and fling the water at the oil, it will be ready when the water makes a loud cracking noise when it hits the oil.
- When the oil is hot, put in the lamb chop and sear for 3 minutes on each side (a little longer if it's a particular thick piece of lamb).
- Blitz mint and the leaves from a bunch of fresh parsley in a food processor until the leaves are in small pieces.
- Add cornichons, capers, balsamic vinegar, and a pinch each of salt, pepper, and sugar to the food processor and process until it makes a pretty, smooth chimichurri sauce.
- Serve atop the pan-seared lamb.
*Hint: If you want to make this exact meal within an hour, start with the potatoes. They take the longest. Get a pot of water on to boil and once they’re rollin, you can get going on the asparagus and chimichurri (snap and toss with olive oil and puree, puree, puree, respectively). Preheat your oven to 450. Once the potatoes are boiled and cooled a bit, smash em, drizzle em in olive oil and throw them into the oven. (The asparagus and potatoes can go in the same oven, with the potatoes taking about 10 minutes longer than the asparagus.) Once the potatoes are in the oven, do the meat. If you get started when the potatoes go into the oven, the meat will be done and resting for the last 10 minutes or so the asparagus and potatoes spend in the oven. Those 10 minutes are your free time for the whole entire day, so use it wisely (wine, kitchen dancing, cleaning food stains off your work pants because dammit! yogurt has to spill every single day?).