I love the spring/summer I really enjoy grilling out it adds a whole casual dimension to cooking. Not that cooking is ever stressful for me I enjoy my time in the kitchen I often chat about my experiments and adventures at work with the same alacrity my coworkers use when they talk about some hockey playoff games that are going on. Grilling has a whole different aspect to it, cooking goes from being something that I enjoy to something well relaxing... call it culinary Tai Chi.
The latest adventure was... Well help me here it is hard to put into words the flavors and aromas worked well together and I love the taste of meat hot off the grill next to a light summery slaw the meal its self tasted wonderful but.... Anyway I will just start
Lamb Ribs with Mango Poblano BBQ Sauce served with Sweet and sour Cucumber Salad:
I am going to start with the Cucumber Salad:
1/2 of a seedless cucumber sliced thin (I used a Mandolin)
4-6 oz of peeled diakon sliced the same way as the cucumber
1 clove of garlic minced
a little bit of thinly sliced red bell pepper for color
1/2 cup of rice wine vinegar (maybe a little more)
2 TBLS sugar
Put the Cukes, Diakon, Red Pepper and Garlic into a heat proof dish while you heat up the vinegar and sugar on the stove. Once the sugar is dissolved and the mixture is almost boiling pour it onto the vegetables and mix so that everything can absorb the flavors then cover and put in the refrigerator to chill for at least half an hour or as long as a day or two.
The BBQ Lamb Ribs
I actually started these both, the ribs and sauce, a day ahead the Ribs were easy so they are next, I made a quick marinade:
1/4 cup rice vinegar
1/2 cup olive oil
2 TBLS brown sugar
1 tsp Dijon mustard
salt pepper garlic to taste
Mix these together and put in a Zip Lock bag with a pound and a half of Lamb ribs (one serving by the way, after a trip to a local historic farm no one but me will even consider lamb to be food) marinade for several hours or overnight. When it is time to start put the ribs and all the marinade into a baking pan, cover and bake at 325 for about an hour, basting a couple of times.
The BBQ sauce is something that I have been working on for a while it tastes good but there is still some work to do... you'll see:
1 roasted poblano chili (if you need help with the roasting look here)
1 onion diced
2 cloves garlic minced
2 TBLS Olive oil
1 tsp salt
1/2 cup rice wine vinegar
Juice from one lime
2 TBLS honey
2 tsp Worcestershire
2 mangoes chopped
1 jalapeno diced
Saute the first four ingredients until the onions are soft then add the and cook until everything is mushy, about half an hour. Let it cool a bit (I let it cool overnight) then toss into a blender and puree. When it is time to cook the ribs go on the grill for about 15 minutes before you brush the sauce on them. Coat well then turn so you get the nice caramelized flavor and texture. When they are good and hot take them off and serve with the Cucumber Salad.
Here is the issue that I talked about, the sauce tastes wonderful! It has the smokey depth of the roasted poblano chili that pairs well with the tangy sweet of the fresh mangoes the summery pop that you get from the honey and lime... well it tastes great! however it LOOKS like something that the Grinch would dip is crispy fried critters in before going postal on the Whos... just look!
I have no problem with the look of it but can't imagine slapping this sauce on something before I served it to a guest or worse a client, I guess that I have to work on the color scheme of the ingredients too. Any ideas?