Monday, September 21, 2009
Here in the Bay Area we're at the inflection point between summer and fall, which means that I spend a lot more time in front of the stove and oven. While I love summer dearly and still declare it my favorite season (long days mean a multitude of outdoor activities), fall is a close second because it means baking bread and simmering stews without cooking all the occupants of the house.
Last week, I decided I wanted to make sloppy Joes, but made with lamb instead of beef. Hence, tidy Joes were born. If you're a lamb lover like me, this beats that slop in a can by miles! I made these extra special by sacrificing some dry farm tomatoes and homemade ketchup and serving it on whole wheat sourdough fresh out of the oven.
1 medium onion, chopped
1 green bell pepper, chopped
3 cloves garlic, chopped
4 T olive oil
2 lbs ground lamb
1 lb tomatoes, chopped
1/2 c ketchup
3 T Worcestershire sauce
salt and pepper, to taste
3 T Habinero sauce (optional)
1. Heat a 12" skillet on medium-high. Add olive oil, swirl it around the skillet to coat the bottom, and then add the chopped onion, bell pepper, and garlic. Saute until the onions begin to soften, about 4 minutes.
2. Add the ground lamb. Break the ground lamb into almond-sized chunks as you saute the meat and cook until no hints of pink remain, about 7 minutes.
3. Add the tomatoes, ketchup, and Worcestershire sauce. Turn the heat down to medium-low and simmer the mixture, uncovered, until it thickens, another 7 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste. If you like spicy food, stir in the habinero sauce.
4. Serve the tidy Joes over a slice of bread. Just like stews, this tidy Joe mix will taste better the next day and it freezes well.