Arrosticini Abruzzi

Tuesday, April 10th, 2012

Arrosticini Abruzzi

Because it the Easter season, there was tons of beautiful Colorado Lamb in the grocery stores around here. I decided to try my hand at making Arrosticini Abruzzi (Skewered Marinated Lamb Tidbits), like the ones we had in Carunchio the night of our wine tasting. It worked out very well, but next time I will cut the meat a little smaller and get the heat up a more on the grill. I also made Dino's Pea Soup - it was fabulous! All we needed was some crusty bread to go with it.

Here is the recipe I came up with:

Arrosticini Abruzzi

For 4 servings:

1/2 pound boned lamb shoulder

1 garlic clove

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

Course Kosher Salt

1/2 tsp dried marjoram or 1 tsp fresh chopped

1/2 tsp dried thyme or 1 tsp fresh chopped

1 bay leaf

10 or 12 small skewers

Slice the meat into strips about 1/2 inch wide and 2 inches long, or smaller. Do not trim away the fat, but try to have lean meat attached to some fat in as many pieces as possible. The fat will melt partly in the cooking, feeding the fire, and baste and sweeten the meat.

Mash the garlic with a heavy knife handle, crushing it enough to split it and loosen the peel, which you will remove and discard.

Put the meat in a bowl or zip lock bag, adding the oil, thyme, bay leaf, marjoram, and garlic. Toss well, thoroughly coating the meat. Let the lamb marinate at room temperature for 2 hours, or in the refrigerator for 4 to 6 hours. Turn the lamb pieces from time to time. If refrigerated, take the meat out at least 30 minutes before cooking.

Preheat the broiler (if you use your oven, it will smoke the place up) or light the coals or, even better, prepare a wood fire. (I used the gas grill turned to high)

Turn the meat thoroughly in the marinade one more time, then skewer it, piercing each strip in at least two places.

When the broiler or fire is hot, or the wood is reduced to hot embers, place the skewers as close as possible to the source of heat. If barbecuing, use very hot coals, Cook for 3-4 minutes on one side, then turn the skewers and cook for 3-4 minutes on the other. A small, fine crust should form on all sides of the meat. Salt well and serve at once.
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