Thursday, April 28, 2016

Lamskoteletten op zijn oud-Hollands for #TheBookClubCookbookCC


Here we are at April's #thebookclubcookbookCC event. It's hard to believe that we only have three more months in this year-long journey to explore - and cook from - The Book Club Cookbook, Revised Edition: Recipes and Food for Thought from Your Book Club's Favorite Books and Authors by Judy Gelman and Vicki Levy Krupp.*

Judy, Vicki, and their publisher, Tarcher-Penguin, have provided the hosting bloggers with copies of the book plus copies to giveaway each month of the project. Woohoo. Incredibly generous.

This month Sarah at Things I Make (for Dinner) has selected Girl With a Pearl Earring by Tracy Chevalier.** Click to read Sarah's invitation. She shared the recipe for Griet's Vegetable Soup, but invited us to find inspiration in any of the pages.


On the Page...
While the boys were playing around the lake during our week in Tahoe earlier in the month, I stayed by the fire and finished this book in one sitting. Loved it.

photo by R - Lake Tahoe, northshore

First, a note: I had no idea this had been made into a movie. I can't wait to track it down because I so enjoyed the book. Though I rarely enjoy a movie-from-book as much as the book itself. So, perhaps I'll skip the movie and just revel in my adoration of Chevalier's book.

I enjoyed the main character, Griet. Though she is essentially a peasant, she is competent, intelligent and observant. She has been hired by Vermeer, the Dutch painter, to clean his studio. Her task: clean without moving anything. Or rather, clean without making it apparent that she moved anything.

Much to the dismay of his high-strung wife Catharina - who is constantly pregnant - Maria, his mother-in-law, and his many children, Griet forges a relationship with Vermeer. It's not a sexual relationship, but it is illicit. She is the only one in the household allowed entry to the studio. Griet displays an affinity towards his art, so she begins to assist Vermeer, grinding his colors, laying out the paints, making subtle suggestions by changing placements in his still-lifes, and - ultimately - being the muse of Girl with a Pearl Earring.

from wikipedia.com

"I saw for him...three or four times a week, for an hour or two each time. It was the part of the week I liked best, with his eyes on only me for those hours. I did not mind that it was not an easy post to hold, that looking sideways for long periods of time gave me headaches. I did not mind when he sometimes he had me move my head again and again so that the yellow cloth swung around, so he could paint me looking as if I had just turned to face him. I did whatever he asked of me."

So, I'll just say that the pearl earring belonged to Vermeer's wife. And it was taken and worn without Catharina's knowledge and consent. As you can imagine, Griet left the household under a cloud. She married Pieter and became a butcher's wife.

On the Plate...
I decided to make a dish with meat, as her life after being the Girl with the Pearl Earring, was at a butcher's stall. I found at traditional Dutch recipe that was found in cookbooks from the 18th and 19th centuries: Lamskoteletten op zijn oud-Hollands. Lamb chops old-Dutch style. It was delicious.

Lamskoteletten op zijn oud-Hollands
Lamb chops old-Dutch style


Ingredients makes 4 to 6 servings

  • 4 bone-in lamb shoulder chops
  • freshly ground salt
  • freshly ground pepper
  • olive oil
  • 1 onion, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • ½ cup red wine
  • 1 C meat stock
  • 2 t fresh rosemary
  • 2 t fresh thyme
  • 1 small bay leaf
  • 1 t flour or cornstarch
  • 1 T fresh parsley

Procedure
Let the meat come to room temperature on the counter. Sprinkle both sides liberally with freshly ground salt and freshly ground black pepper. Preheat oven to 250 degrees F.

Heat your grill or grill pan until oil is almost to the smoke point. Place the chops on the pan and sear for 3 minutes.


Flip the chops to the other side and sear for another 3 minutes.


Place them in a lightly oiled oven dish and roast them for 12 to 15 minutes.

In the same pan that you seared the chops, add a splash of olive oil and cook the onions and garlic until softened and caramelized. Deglaze the pan with the wine and pour in the stock. Add in the rosemary, thyme, and bay. Bring to a boil. Whisk in the flour or cornstarch and bring to a boil again. Let thicken. Fold in the fresh parsley.

To serve, put the chops on individual plates and pour the sauce over them. 

Giveaway
This month Sarah at Thing I Make (for Dinner), this month's host, is giving away a copy of the book.* Enter to win a copy of the cookbook so you can join us in future months, if you wish!

One of our lucky readers - US and Canada only! - can enter to win a copy ofThe Book Club Cookbook, Revised Edition: Recipes and Food for Thought from Your Book Club's Favorite Books and Authors by Judy Gelman and Vicki Levy Krupp, courtesy of Tarcher-Penguin. Giveaway runs from April 1st till April 30th at 6 o'clock PM, Pacific time. Please see terms and conditions in the rafflecopter widget below. Many thanks to Tarcher Books. You may find Tarcher: on the web, on Facebook, on Twitter, and on Pinterest.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

*Disclosure: Sarah received a complimentary copy of The Book Club Cookbook, Revised Edition: Recipes and Food for Thought from Your Book Club's Favorite Books and Authors by Judy Gelman and Vicki Levy Krupp as an opportunity to give a copy away. Opinions are our own. We received no further compensation for our posts.

**This blog currently has a partnership with Amazon.com in their affiliate program, which gives me a small percentage of sales if you buy a product through a link on my blog. It doesn't cost you anything more. If you are uncomfortable with this, feel free to go directly to Amazon.com and search for the item of your choice.


   

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