Noisettes d’Agneau a la Clamart

A classic French dish, Noisettes d’Agneau a la Clamart (nwah-zet dah-nyoh ah lah klah-mahr) is usually served with Noisette Potatoes. No other accompaniment is necessary.

1½ oz. plus

1 teaspoon butter

1 teaspoon salt

1 lb. fresh peas, weighed after shelling

8 lamb noisettes

4 oz. Hour

1 teaspoon salt

½ oz. butter

1 tablespoon vegetable fat

1 to

2 tablespoons iced water

Preheat the oven to fairly hot 400°F (Gas Mark 6, 200°C).

Using the teaspoon of butter, lightly grease 8 patty tins and set aside.

To make the pastry, sift the flour and salt into a medium-sized mixing bowl. Add the butter and the vegetable fat and cut them into small pieces with a table knife. With your fingertips, rub the fats into the flour until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs.

Add

1 tablespoon of the iced water and, using the knife, mix it into the flour mixture. With your hands, mix and knead the dough until it is smooth. Add more water if the dough is too dry. Pat the dough into a ball, cover it with greaseproof or waxed paper and chill it in the refrigerator for

30 minutes.

On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough to a circle about

½ inch thick. Using a

3-inch pastry cutter, cut the dough into circles and line the prepared patty tins with them. Place a circle of aluminium foil or greaseproof or waxed paper inside each dough case. Half fill each one with dried beans or rice and place the patty tins in the oven. Bake blind for

10 minutes. Remove the foil or paper and beans or rice and continue baking for

5 minutes or until the pastry is golden brown.

Remove the patty tins from the oven and allow the tartlets to cool slightly in their tins. Turn off the oven. Cover the tartlets lightly with aluminium foil to prevent them from drying out and return them to the oven to keep warm.

Meanwhile, half fill a medium-sized saucepan with cold water. Add the salt, cover the pan and bring the water to the boil over high heat. Add the peas and when the water comes to the boil again reduce the heat to low. Cook the peas, uncovered, for 15 to 20 minutes or until they are tender.

Remove the pan from the heat and drain the peas in a colander. Using the back of a wooden spoon push the peas through a strainer back into the saucepan, or puree them in a food mill or electric blender. Add

1 tablespoon of the remaining butter and place the pan over low heat. Cook, stirring constantly, for

5 minutes or until the butter has been absorbed and the pea puree is hot and smooth. Remove the pan from the heat.

Remove the pastry cases from the oven and spoon equal portions of the pea puree into each one. Return the pastry cases to the oven to keep warm while you fry the noisettes.

In a large frying-pan, melt the remaining butter over moderate heat. When the foam subsides, add the noisettes and fry them for 4 to 6 minutes on each side or until they are tender but still slightly pink inside.

Remove the pan from the heat. Using a slotted spoon, remove the noisettes from the pan and place them on top of the pea- filled pastry tartlets. Remove the string. Serve immediately.

Noisettes d’Agneau Ismail Bayeldi

A beautiful dish perfect for a dinner party, Noisettes d’Agneau Ismail Bayeldi (nwah-zet dah-nyoh ish-myle bah’ell-dee) was adapted by the French from Middle East cuisine. The dish needs no accompaniment other than a good rose or red wine.

4 SERVINGS sufficient vegetable oil for deep-frying 2 large aubergines , sliced and degorged juice of 2 lemon 8 lamb noisettes 2 garlic cloves, halved 2 teaspoon black pepper 2 oz. butter 4 medium-sized tomatoes, quartered

RICE

2 oz. butter

2 medium-sized onions, finely chopped

1 green pepper, white pith removed, seeded and chopped

1 red pepper, white pith removed, seeded and chopped

8 oz. long-grain rice, washed, soaked in cold water for

30 minutes and drained

1 teaspoon salt

2 teaspoon black pepper

½ teaspoon cayenne pepper

½ teaspoon crushed saffron threads, soaked in

2 tablespoons hot water

1 tablespoon lemon juice

18 fl. oz. hot chicken stock

Preheat the oven to moderate 350°F (Gas Mark 4, 180°C).

First, prepare the rice. In a medium-sized flameproof casserole, melt the butter over moderate heat. When the foam subsides, add the onions and peppers and cook, stirring occasionally, for 8 to 10 minutes, or until the onions are golden brown.

Stir in the rice and cook, stirring constantly, for 5 minutes. Add the salt, pepper, cayenne, the saffron mixture, lemon juice and chicken stock. Stir well and bring the liquid to the boil, stirring constantly.

Cover the casserole, remove it from the heat and place it in the centre of the oven. Bake the rice for 25 to 30 minutes, or until it is tender and has absorbed all the liquid.

Meanwhile, fill a deep-frying pan one-third full with oil and place it over moderate heat. Heat the oil until it registers

375 °F on a deep-frying ther-mometer, or until a small cube of stale bread dropped into the oil turns golden in

40 seconds.

Add a few of the aubergine slices and fry them for 2 to 3 minutes or until they are crisp and lightly browned. With a slotted spoon, remove the slices from the pan and drain them on kitchen paper towels. Transfer the slices to a warmed plate, sprinkle with a little of the lemon juice and keep hot while you fry the remaining aubergine slices in the same way.

Set aside and keep hot.

Rub the lamb all over with the garlic. Discard the garlic and rub the salt and pepper over the meat.

In a large frying-pan, melt the butter over moderate heat. When the foam sub-sides, add the lamb noisettes and fry them for 4 to 6 minutes on each side, or until they are tender but still slightly pink inside.

With a slotted spoon, remove the noisettes from the pan. Remove and dis-card the string from each noisette and keep them hot.

Add the tomato quarters to the pan and fry them, turning frequently with a slotted spoon, for 3 minutes or until they are heated through but still firm.

Remove the pan from the heat and set aside. Keep warm.

Remove the casserole from the oven and spoon the rice mixture into a large, shallow warmed serving dish. Arrange the lamb noisettes in a row on top of the rice mixture. Surround with the fried auber-gine slices, garnish with the tomato quarters and serve immediately.

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