Monday, 23 February 2015

Persian inspired Lamb chops

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

I was shopping for organic Lavender online for baking purposes and came across dried rose petals, so what did I do? I bought them both! :) 
Ofcourse I had no idea what to do with rose petals other than use them for decorations, so I looked into it some more and found that  rose petals are used extensively in Persian cuisine for taste and decoration, also for beauty purposes and some medical conditions. So having looked at the way dried rose petals can be used I decided to grind them and use as a spice for marinating my lamb chops. along with some other spices too, and WOW did they turn out amazing! The dried rose petals add a delicate floral aroma and flavour to the meat. A  must try recipe if you wish to impress or just indulge in something that little more special :) 


2lbs lamb chops
6 tbsn dried edible rose petal ( grind in a spice grinder till very fine )
5 tbsn of Olive oil or ghee
1 tspn Turmeric
1 tspn Cumin powder
1 tspn Garam masala ( Click here for my garam masala recipe
1 tspn Cinnamon powder
1 and a half to 2 tspn salt 
3 cloves of garlic sliced or grated.
Juice of 1 lemon
2 tbsn of rosewater 


3 red chillies ( remove seeds if you don't want it too spicy )
1 cup of fresh coriander chopped up
1 tbsn of dried mint
Juice of 1 lime
Half cup of olive oil
Salt and black pepper to taste

1. Put lamb chop in a bowl and in all the ingredients and mix thoroughly making sure all the lamb chops are covered in the marinade. Cover with cling film and leave for a few hours or best overnight.

2. Pre-heat oven to highest temp, take the meat out of fridge and leave to come to room temperature. After about 10 mins, rub a little oil into a large baking dish and place the lamb chops on there.

3. Place the chops into the oven and cook for about 25 mins. Keep checking to make sure they are not over cooking as some oven cook quicker than others.

4. In the meantime make the dressing by adding all the ingredients for dressing to the oil and mix well, season according to your own taste. Leave aside to allow the flavours to marry.

5. Once the lamb chops have cooked remove and place in a serving dish, drizzle over the dressing and serve immediately.

Juicy and succulent!

Serve with a salad or Vermicelli Rice. Click here for link to that recipe

Serving suggestion, Persian Lamb chops with Vermicelli Rice

My Homemade Garam Masala

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

Nothing beat home milled spices! Forget the rubbish in the packets! one of the most famous of all is Garam Masala which is a Mixed spice that is used in cooking within the Sub-continent. What I love about garam masala is that each region, even household has their own unique version, there is no one set recipe, although the majority of whole spices is generic, some may like more cumin in theirs while others may want more cloves and cinnamon. I like to vary mine each time it, I guess I am still trying to find that perfect blend for me :) 
I give you my version here however sometimes I like to add nutmeg and mace, here I have not used but if you would like to add them by all mean try and see what tickles your taste buds. :)


2 Tbsn Cloves
2 Tbsn Black Peppercorns 
10 Large Black Cardamoms
3 Tbsn Whole coriander seeds
5 Tbsn of Cumin seeds 
1 whole Cinnamon stick
1 Star Anise


1. Dry roast the spice by places them into a dry frying pan, keep close watch and keep stirring until the spices begin to release a beautiful aroma and boy will they!! When they are lightly toasted remove and put into a grinder.

 4. Grind the spices until finely milled, I like to do this in batches as it grinds quicker and finer this way. 

5. Once milled put into a plate and allow to cool. Once spice mix has cooled store in air tight container and use whenever you wish to add the aroma of the sub-continent to your dishes! :)


Courgette Spagetti/ Courgetti

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

Courgette spaghetti or Courgetti as it is known here. ( One of my American friends informed me it known in the US as Spoodles, spaghetti/noodles :D ) I saw this recipe in a Healthy eating magazine as an alternative to pasta. I thought I would give this a try and see how it goes, would I substitute it for pasta? No, however this is a delicious dish in its own right, so flavourful and bursting with freshness! I really enjoyed cooking this, as well as eating! You can cook with any ingredients you wish, I decided to go for the fresh flavours of the Mediterranean. It doesn't take long at all. It can be eaten as a yummy lunch, light dinner or as a side dish. Either way I am sure you will enjoy! Give it try and see for yourself.


3 Courgettes
10 sundried tomatoes from a jar
10 roasted peppers from jar
4 tbsn of Olive oil
1 Small bag of fresh basil chopped up
Handful of pine nuts
Salt and black pepper to taste.


1. Cut courgettes into thin strips till you reach the seeds. ( To do this I used a tool that looks like a peeler but actually juliennes, if you do not have you can grate using the thick side of grater)
 Do not throw away the inside of the courgettes as this will be used in the sauce.

Keep this part to add to the sauce.

2. Next heat 2 tbsn of olive oil in pan and add the courgetti and cook for about 2 minutes on high heat. We do not want to fully cook the courgettes but just enough to keep a good crunch. Remove and set aside.

3. Heat the remaining oil in same pan and add the sundried tomatoes, peppers and inside of the courgettes. Cook till the pulp of courgettes has softened which should take about 5 minutes. Then add you chopped up basil leaves. Cook for another 2 mins and then add your courgetti.

4. Cook all together for a few more minutes making sure the sauce covers all the courgetti.
5. In small frying pan toast the pine nuts until golden brown, making sure to not burn.
6. Finally, dish up your courgetti into a plate, sprinkle with pine nuts and serve.