The seasons fly by, don’t they? We just held our Lusty Month of May Springtime Jazz Feast, and here we are already testing dishes for our Sunken City Supper Club SUMMER Event, “Mediterranean on the Pacific.”
It will be held at our friends’ home high on the hill in Rancho Palos Verdes overlooking the Pacific Ocean. For this theme we will be imagining that the ocean is the Mediterranean Sea. We’ll be cooking with seasonal summer ingredients and Mediterranean flavors. This dish made the cut…
Quarter Roma tomatoes and gently squeeze out juice and seeds. Drizzle with olive oil and season with Kosher salt, pepper, dried Greek oregano, and a little sugar. You can slow-roast at 250° for 2+ hours, or if you are in a hurry do what I call fast-roast: Cook in a convection oven at 425° until most of the moisture evaporates and the tomato begins to caramelize.
Meanwhile sauté diced onion and green bell pepper in olive oil until soft, add minced garlic.
Gently brown seasoned ground lamb then drain off the fat.
Add the lamb to the onion mixture.
Toast fennel seeds in a dry skillet for a few minutes. Use a mortar and pestle to crush the seeds. Add peeled diced tomatoes, ground cinnamon, dried Greek oregano, and fennel seeds to the lamb mixture. Simmer over low heat, stirring occasionally.
Rub sliced eggplant with kosher salt and let sweat on paper towels for an hour, turning once, to remove much of the moisture. Then rinse off the salt, pat dry, and brush with olive oil. Grill over medium high heat. Slice the eggplant in generous portions so it doesn’t shrivel up on the grill.
Speaking of eggplant, I hope you had a chance to enter my Blog 3rd Anniversary GIVEAWAY!
It’s not too late!
Simply leave a comment on the Blog is 3! Celebrating with King Trumpets and Shishito Peppers! post for an opportunity to win a copy of Charlie Trotter’s Vegetables by midnight PDT June 24th.
Trotter is a master of vegetables. One of the eggplant recipes in this book is Eggplant and Potato Cannelloni with Wilted Spinach and Cardamom-Carrot Juice. Seriously, this is the most inspiring vegetable cookbook ever written! And wherever you reside in this big beautiful world, I am happy to ship it to you! No restrictions. To help me celebrate this milestone, please leave a comment and enter to win! And as always, thank you for your support, readership, and encouragement.
Finish the spiced lamb with chopped fresh mint and crumbled feta.
To assemble: place an eggplant round in the center of a plate. Scoop some of the lamb on top, then another eggplant round, lamb, then top with a third piece of eggplant. Surround the Napoleon with roasted tomatoes and chunks of feta. Garnish with a drizzle of olive and mint.
We seat up to 24 people at our Sunken City Supper Club event, so in addition to being seasonal and tasting great, we need to be able to prepare and execute the dishes in a home kitchen. If you are looking for a great summer dish to serve to a crowd, definitely consider this one! And please stop by later in July to read about the Mediterranean on the Pacific event!
Wishing a very Happy Father’s Day to my dear brother, Don, awesome dad to my nephews, Stone, 7, and Jett, 5 and to all fathers out there on this the 100th anniversary of Father’s Day!
And Happy Summer too!