Tonight's dinner felt fancier than normal. Perhaps it is because I used New Zealand lamb and served it with an awesome wine (more on that in a minute.) But really, this is a meal that is easy to make and will impress. The meal: Rosemary-Garlic Lamb Chops, Tomato Mixture, Tomato-Balsamic Rice and Cannellini beans.
Rosemary-Garlic Lamb Loin Chops (recipe from Better Homes and Gardens)
Ingredients1 recipe Tomato-Balsamic Rice, (recipe below)
4 lamb loin chops, cut 1-1/2 to 2 inches thick (1-3/4 to 2 lb. total)
1 tablespoon snipped fresh rosemary
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 cups cherry tomatoes
1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
Directions1. Prepare Tomato-Balsamic Rice. Meanwhile, arrange oven rack so that the top of the chop surface is 4 to 5 inches from the heat when placed on a broiler pan. Make sure to account for the height of broiler pan and chops. Preheat broiler.
2. Coat the top of broiler pan with nonstick cooking spray. Rub both sides of the chops with half of each of the the snipped rosemary, garlic, salt, and pepper. Broil chops for 18 to 20 minutes or until an instant-read thermometer inserted in chops registers 145 degrees F (medium-rare doneness), turning occasionally to brown evenly.
3. Meanwhile, in a large skillet heat oil over medium heat. Add tomatoes and remaining half of the snipped rosemary, garlic, salt, and pepper. Cook about 5 minutes or until the tomatoes just begin to soften. Stir in vinegar.
4. Serve chops with tomatoes, and Tomato-Balsamic Rice. Top with rosemary sprigs. Makes 4 servings.
Tomato-Balsamic Rice: In a medium saucepan combine 2 cups water, 1 cup uncooked jasmine or long grain rice, and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Simmer, covered, for 18 to 20 minutes or until rice is tender and liquid is absorbed. Stir in one 14.5-ounce can diced tomatoes with basil, garlic, and oregano, drained; 1/2 cup frozen peas; and 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar. Cover; let stand 5 minutes to heat through. Makes about 4 cups.
The wine that I served it with was Frank Family Vineyard's 2007 Cabernet Sauvignon. Their wines are so delicious. I picked it up at Total Wine. I've wanted to buy one of their wines for a couple of years now. Back story on this: When I was in Napa in 2009, someone who wishes to remain anonymous needed to use a restroom while we were driving around on a dirt road with no stops in sight...until we came across this winery. They had nice, clean bathrooms and no objections to us using them. They were used and then we left promptly. The next day we found ourselves in the same predicament and stopped back at FFV. This time they gave us a free tasting. We loved the wines but we're in a hurry to make a reservation and said we'd be back to actually buy something. We never went back. So I've always felt that I "owed it them" to buy some of their wine. While it is kind of pricey, it is SO worth it. I will definitely be buying more in the future. This bottle was purchased as a Valentine's gift for my hubs.