Wednesday 5 October 2011

Wednesday musings . . .

Todd often reads during the day. It might be a book that he is enjoying, or the scriptures . . . sometimes it's one of the magazines he get's or even the newspaper. Just yesterday he remarked as he put down the newspaper he was reading . . . "I'm quite sure that there are some people in this world who are never happy unless they are totally miserable."

That gave me food for thought. (No surprise there!) It is true. I had to agree. There are certainly people in the world, just like that, and I think I know a few of them myself! You know the ones I mean . . . they are those who expect bad news by every post, and take a gloomy pleasure in forecasting all sorts of misfortune . . . anything from bad weather to world disasters!

I know, too, however . . . that is is just not reasonable or even prudent to go through life trusting in blimd optimism . . . but I am a great believer in the power of Positive Thinking. Life is just so much better and happier when you see the glass as being half full rather than half empty. I believe it was Mark Twain who said:

"Nobody knows the troubles I've seen, and most of them never happened!"

Far better to dwell on the positive than on a troubles that just don't exist and that may never ever occur!!

I've been visiting this reunion site daily which is filled with people that I used to go to school with and that used to hang around our teenage recreational centre. It's been great fun sharing and connecting with old school mates. Lately they've been discussing this old fella that used to be seen often walking along the high-roads and by-roads of our community back them . . . He didn't have a car and always walked everywhere he went. He was always so cheerful and seemed to get a lot of pleasure from a hunk of baloney, some bread and a jug of milk. His name was Clem and you would often see him sitting in the local Mall, pleasantly passing the time of day with people. Every community has it's features and he was certainly one of ours. I think it's pretty wonderful that this old man, who probably never travelled very far from his own area, except to walk to the mall each day, is so very well thought of, and features big in all of our memories. Someone has even come up with a portrait of him that was done. Just goes to show that you don't have to have a lot or to accomplish great things to be a great person . . . all you simply have to do is to affect the world around you with a pleasant word and presence.

Just my thoughts today.

I wasn't a person that ate a lot of lamb before I moved over here to the UK, my sum and only experience of it having been the one time that my mother cooked lamb chops for the family. They smelt like burning mittens and none of us would eat them. It was probably very old lamb, perhaps even mutton . . . oh what I difference I have discovered in the taste of fresh new lamb! It's absolutely lovely! We don't have it very often, still, but when we do . . . it is something that I particularly enjoy!

*Grilled Lamb Chops with a Coriander Mint Sauce*
Serves 4
Printable Recipe

These not only taste delicious but they are really attractive as well. The tasty marinade flavours the meat before it cooks and is used as a sauce to be served with the cooked chops as well, making the whole dish look very mouthwatering and colourful, a feast for the eyes as well as for the lips . That's what good food is really all about . . .

2 tsp minced fresh ginger
1/4 cup packed fresh mint leaves
1/4 cup packed fresh coriander leaves
1 TBS runny honey
1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
1/2 cup of a good colourless and flavourless oil, such as a canola or sunflower
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

8 rib lamb chops, 3/4 to 1 inch in thickness
Fresh mint or coriander sprigs to garnish

Place all of the marinade ingredients in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the metal blade. Process until completely smooth. Taste and adjust the seasonings if necessary. Pour into a bowl and set aside.

Put the lamb chops into a plastic bag with a zip lock top and add 1/4 cup of the marinade. (Reserve the remaining marinade to use for a sauce after cooking) Zip the bag shut and turn the bag around, squashing it a bit to coat all of the meat with the marinade. Place in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes, or up to four hours, turning it once or twice and giving it another squish during that time.

Heat up the barbeque grill, or oil a grill pan really well. Heat to medium high. Remove the lamb chops from the marinade, discarding what's left in the bag and grill them for several minutes on each side, about 4 for medium rare, depending on the thickness and how well you like them done.

Place the chops on a heated serving plate, criss crossing the ends for a pretty presentation. Whisk up the remaining marinade and drizzle some it over the chops. Garnish with some of the mint or coriander leaves and serve immediately with the rest of the sauce on the side.

Over in The English Kitchen today you will find a deliciously scrummy Date and Walnut Pudding.

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