In which the world of culinary hedonism is explored with a cup and a half of curiosity, a heaping tablespoon of passion and a dash of clumsiness.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Thirty-fourth Post ~ Rosemary Lamb Tenderloins en Papillote

As Entry #2 in the previously mentioned "en Papillote Files," I feature my favorite red meat of all time: Lamb. I don't eat red meat that often, so when I do, I sometimes will splurge on lamb tenderloins. Lamb and rosemary are a beautiful combination!

I'm truly loving the "en papillote" style of cooking. It typically uses no oil and relies on steam for the cooking, so it's healthier than a lot of the pan-cooked options, and it has this way of melding all the flavors together in a way unlike any other!

Here's what you'll need for tonight's dinner:

~ Lamb tenderloins
~ Rosemary (fresh or dried)
~ Balsamic vinegar
~ Garlic
~ Mushrooms
~ White wine
~ Parsley (fresh or dried)
~ Salt/pepper to taste
~ Asparagus

Boil the asparagus in salted water just until tender. Mince some garlic, preheat your oven, cut your cute heart out of parchment (see Post #33). When the asparagus is just pierceable, drain and set aside.

Start a tablespoon of olive oil heating in a pan. Add some balsamic vinegar, minced garlic and parsley. Add the mushrooms and white wine. While that's cooking, ruminate on the essay you're writing. Try to come up with a great experiment design.


One thing I've noticed about cooking en papillote is that you don't need to add as much liquid as you'd think. I've been adding about a quarter cup of liquid, and I don't think you need that much. This lamb turned out a little "brothy" - which I guess is okay - and so did the pork I made the other night, about which I shall be blogging soon. The moral of the story: if you like broth, add all you want. If you want a more photogenic presentation, add a bit less liquid than you'd think.


So your mushrooms are done - add the lamb tenderloins for just a few seconds, browning each side. Now put the lamb onto the parchment. Top with a sprig of rosemary, then add the mushrooms on top, and the asparagus on top of that. Into the spout of the heart, add the juices from cooking the mushrooms (resist the temptation to add more wine and water). Seal up the parchment and bake for 12 minutes. During this time, flip back through four weeks of reading and confirm that the experiment idea you've thought of while cooking will work.

Take the packet out of the oven and carefully (so as not to burn yourself) cut an X into the top of the parchment, revealing all the goodness inside.

I paired tonight's meal with a French Merlot-blend from the Domaine du Poujol from Proteus vineyards. It's medium-to-heavy with an earthy foreground, perfectly complimenting the lamb, with a hint of raspberry. It pairs beautifully with this meal, and, I believe, would go quite well with a steak or beef dish. All in all, this meal was exactly what I needed: quick, nutritious, and brainstorm-worthy!

Yours in the love of good food and wine,

The blogger is not an experienced chef. She takes no responsibility for the quality of the meals prepared while following her advice. Use your own judgment regarding cooking times and proper food handling.