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Menu Plan for Fall I: Week 8, Saturday

Roman Egg Soup
Braised Lamb in Red Wine
Twice-Cooked Potatoes
Lentils with Chickpeas

Cooking time: 2 hours, 1 1/4 hour break for menu          Cooking schedule: see below for instructions

       Another braise - but 'tis the season, after all.  The potatoes can be cooked through the first stage earlier as well.  We'll use up the leftover chickpeas with the lentils - then finish both later in the week.  The soup is simple, flavorful and warming.  For this dinner I used the sauce from the whole tomatoes I needed for the lentils, plus 1 tomato to equal 1 cup total for the soup. Substitute pork for the lamb if you prefer.

Roman Egg Soup

Total time: 10 minutes
     This is the second easiest soup I make - an Italian version of Egg Drop Soup (the easiest). I sometimes add chopped tomato to it, or not; sometimes croutons, or not. 

Roman Egg Soup Ingredients: 

 Instructions:

Braised Lamb in Red Wine

Total time: 2 hours
     Slow-cooking lamb in wine is typical all over France.  This uses red wine, similar to the version made in Avignon.  The original is slowly baked for 5 hours in a 350F (180C) oven; I opted for a slow braise on the cook top.  After 2 hours the flavors have blended perfectly and the lamb melts in your mouth.

Braised Lamb in Red Wine Ingredients:

 Instructions:

Twice-Cooked Potatoes

Total time: 40 minutes
    These are slightly different than my usual oven fries, but still crispy on the outside, creamy on the inside; finished with just a sprinkle of salt.

Twice-Cooked Potatoes  Ingredients:

 Instructions:

Lentils with Chickpeas

Total time: 30 minutes
    I use the tiny, green lentils de Puy, but the larger brown or tan lentils will work as well.  This is a simple method and would work equally well with any legume - highlighting the flavor of the vegetable.

Lentils with Chickpeas Ingredients:

 Instructions:

Cooking Schedule: 2 hours, 1 1/4 hour break
Assemble all food, utensils and serving dishes
Utensils: measuring cups, spoons, knives,
medium saucepan with lid, (use 2X) small saucepan
with lid, heavy saucepan or small Dutch oven,
medium nonstick skillet, bowl, whisk,

Cut potatoes in half, cook
Pick through lentils, cook
Roughly chop bacon, sauté
Clean onion, all shallots, garlic
Slice onions, shallots for lamb
Chop shallots for lentils, set aside
Mince all garlic, divide for lamb, potatoes, lentils
Add onions, shallots, garlic for lamb to bacon, sauté
Trim, cut lamb
Add lamb to onion/shallot, lightly brown
Add remaining ingredients to lamb, bring to boil
Drain, rinse potatoes
Put potatoes on a plate, set aside to cool
Check lentils, if done, or close, turn off, set aside
Reduce heat on lamb to simmer (barely bubbling)
     Pause for an hour or so - but.....

Check lamb after 30 minutes, adjust heat if needed
    Back?  Check lamb
Grate Parmesan
Drain lentils
Sauté shallots, garlic for lentils
Open, drain tomatoes, reserving liquid
Heat stock for soup
Remove 1 small - medium tomato for soup
Roughly chop tomatoes, keeping 1 for soup separate
Add tomato, juice to stock for soup
Add remaining chopped tomatoes to shallots, sauté
Slice potatoes
Start to sauté potatoes with garlic, rosemary
Add lentils, chickpeas to tomato/shallot, cover, simmer
Whisk eggs
Add crumbs, Parmesan to eggs
Turn potatoes, turn heat to very low
Add eggs to soup, stir
Ladle soup into bowls, serve
     Done? 
Spoon lamb into serving bowl
Remove potatoes, serve lentils

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