Noisettes d’Agneau Milanaise

One of the best and most interesting ways of preparing lamb noisettes. Noisettes d’Agneau Milanaise (nwah-zet dah-nyoh meel-ah-nays) should be served with grated Parmesan cheese and accompanied by a crisp green salad.

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 onion, finely chopped

1 garlic clove, crushed

14 oz. canned peeled tomatoes

2 tablespoons tomato puree

1 bay leaf

2 teaspoons salt

2 teaspoon black pepper

2 teaspoon dried oregano

1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil or

1 teaspoon dried basil

4 oz. butter

2 oz. mushrooms, wiped clean and sliced

2 oz. lean cooked ham, cut into julienne strips

3 pints water

8 oz. spaghetti

8 lamb noisettes

2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

In a medium-sized saucepan, heat the oil over moderate heat. When the oil is hot, add the onion and garlic and fry, stirring occasionally, for 5 to 7 minutes or until the onion is soft and translucent but not brown.

Stir in the tomatoes and the can juice, the tomato puree, bay leaf, 1 teaspoon of the salt, the pepper, oregano and basil and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 20 minutes, adding a little cold water if the sauce becomes too thick.

Meanwhile, in a large frying-pan melt 1 ounce of the butter over moderate heat. When the foam subsides, add the mushrooms and fry, stirring occa-sionally, for 3 minutes. Add the ham and cook for a further 3 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and, using a slotted spoon, transfer the mushrooms and ham to the tomato sauce. Set the frying-pan aside without rinsing.

It will be used to cook the noisettes.

In a large saucepan, bring the water to the boil over high heat. Add the remaining salt and the spaghetti. Reduce the heat to moderate and cook for 10 to 12 minutes or until the spaghetti is ‘al dente’ or just tender.

Remove the pan from the heat and drain the spaghetti in a colander. Return the spaghetti to the pan and stir in 1 ounce of the butter. Set aside and keep1 warm.

Add the remaining butter to the frying-pan and return the pan to 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 and, using a slotted spoon, transfer the noisettes to a warmed serving dish, arranging them in a large circle.

Remove and discard the string.

Place the spaghetti in the centre of the circle and spoon over the tomato sauce. Sprinkle with the parsley and serve immediately.

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