Rosemary Lamb Chops (and Tofu) with whole wheat spaghetti and an Arugula Pesto and Arugula Salad

In the first installment of the Cooking Challenge, I will take on this request:

Jeff said….
In the spirit of your challenge, I offer you a challenge. Instead of me giving you the recipe, I will give you the main ingredient (à la Iron Chef) and you will have to incorporate it into a dish. The main ingredient is…. Arugula.

A fair challenge, as I hardly cook with arugula. The dish… pan seared Rosemary Lamb Chops and Tofu with whole wheat spaghetti and an arugula purée and a small arugula salad with a mustard vinaigrette.

Arugula Pesto:

1 1/2 Tsp pine nuts – toasted
3-4 cups arugula
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 Tsp Pecorino Romano shredded
1 tsp salt
Pinch of pepper

Toast pine nuts at 300 for about 6-8 minutes, let cool. Chop arugula. Toss pine nuts into food processor and process until finely chopped. Add arugula, oil, cheese, salt and dash of pepper. Not much is needed due to pepperiness of the arugula. Process until smooth, set aside.

Mustard Vinaigrette

1 tsp dijon mustard
1 Tsp balsamic vinegar
dash soy sauce
3 Tsp olive oil

Add mustard, vinegar and soy sauce to mixing/salad bowl and mix with whisk. Slowly pour in oil while continuing to whisk. Season with salt and pepper to taste. When ready, add arugula to bowl along with tomatoes, cucumbers or other vegetables as you see fit.

1/2 brick of extra firm tofu
4-6 lamb chops
1 Tablespoon Rosemary
2 garlic cloves (minced)
2 Tsp olive oil
1/4 cup of stock (vegetable or chicken)

Slice lamb rack into individual chops (if not already done) and tofu into thin 1″ slices. Pat down both, especially tofu to remove excess water. Season with salt, pepper, and rosemary. Set aside.

Preheat oven to 375 and spray or grease oven pan. Boil water for your selected pasta. Depending on the type, begin cooking pasta in order to be nearing al dente when the lamb is ready.
Heat two pans over med/high heat with a Tsp of oil in each. Place tofu in one pan and lamb in other. In the pan with tofu, add stock and let it reduce completely, flip and cook until golden brown. For lamb, sear each side of the chops for 2 minutes. Place in oven pan and cook at 375 as pasta finishes, about 4-5 minutes, depending on your desired temperature. 4-5 minutes for medium rare. 5-6 minutes for medium.
Drain pasta, and then place back into pot. Add Arugula purée, although it may not require the entire amount. Toss until well mixed.

P.S.  This is Anna here… and this is definitely one of the best meals Evan has made, so I suppose that is saying something.

About Evan Halperin

I like to eat. I like to cook. I like to eat what I cook. Now, I will share with you what I like to cook. My wife and I may be a vegetarian and a carnivore, but it doesn’t mean we can’t cook a nice meal with both, without compromising taste. I will share my creative meals of the Carnivore and the Vegetarian.
This entry was posted in anna, lamb, main course, pesto, tofu. Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Rosemary Lamb Chops (and Tofu) with whole wheat spaghetti and an Arugula Pesto and Arugula Salad

  1. Jeff says:

    Wow, I commend you for your effort. Putting the puree with the spaghetti was an idea I had never thought about. But, when you think about the taste/uniqueness of arugula, it can be used in the same fashion as basil or any other leafy green. Thus, adding it to pasta seems to make sense! As for the lamb chops, those look super good. Maybe next challenge, the challenger should be a judge/guest…haha!

  2. I guess it is more of a pesto, since its thicker and many of the sam core ingredients as a basil pesto. Its a lot more peppery and smooth.

    Maybe I'll take the contest/challenge on the road.

  3. herb1419 says:

    you can cook this at my house anytime

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