Wednesday, 8 February 2012

Date Night - Oven Roasted Pomegranate Glazed Lamb Cutlets with Bulgur, Chickpeas and Pomegranate Pilaf

Oven Roasted Pomegranate Glazed Lamb Cutlets with
Bulgur, Chickpeas and Pomegranate Pilaf
Mixing the pomegranate marinade
Adding the lamb  cutlets to the pomegranate marinade
Marinated lamb cutlets ready for the oven
Cooked Bulgur wheat
Cooking the onions and dried cherries and cranberries
Bulgur, Chickpeas and Pomegranate Pilaf

'If I read out the list of ingredients I've bought, can you tell me what to cook?' This was the question posted by my friend in work. I have, unknowingly, become a food guru in work, it seems. Well, I must admit I did, over the years, shamelessly talk about the food I've cooked, post food pictures on my social media sites and persuade friends to support my blog at any given opportunities. After much discussion, he decided on Moroccan-style chicken Tagine with Chickpeas, a variation on my previous lamb tagine. This is perfect for his date night and will definitely look impressive on a plate.

Thanks to him, I have also decided to concoct a middle eastern feast using chickpeas for my very own supper. Although not really a date night for me, but whoever say spending a quiet casual evening at home with your other half does not consider as a date? With a sweet, fruity glazed on tender, rich lamb that melts in the mouth, leaving a light smoky taste. The perfumed chickpeas and bulgur pilaf, filled with all the wonderful fruits and sweet caramelised onions is just the perfect accompaniment for the rich lamb. Having made an effort like this, even a cold quiet winter evening will be turned into a spectacular night.

(Serves 2-3)


6 lamb cutlets
1 tbsp pomegranate molasses
1 tbsp maple syrup or honey
1/2 tsp caraway seeds, toasted in a dry pan and ground to a powder in a mortar and pestle

For the Pilaf:

600ml chicken or vegetable stock
250g coarse bulgur wheat
Olive oil
1 large red onion, sliced
1 tbsp pomegranate molasses
1 tbsp dried cherries
1 tbsp dried cranberries
400g canned chickpeas, drained and rinsed
110g shelled pistachio nuts
seeds of 1 pomegranate
juice of half a lemon
a small handful fresh coriander, finely chopped
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper


In a large bowl, mix the pomegranate molasses, maple syrup or honey and caraway seeds. Add the lamb, coat well with the marinade and leave to marinate for 20-30 minutes.

Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 200°C. Remove the cutlets form the bowl and place in a shallow roasting tin. Pour over the glaze and cook in the oven for 25-30 minutes, until the lamb is cooked to your liking and the glaze is sticky and glossy. Rest for 5 minutes.

To make the bulgur pilaf, bring the stock to the boil in a medium pan. Add the bulgur wheat, reduce the heat and simmer for 8-10 minutes, until the bulgur wheat is tender and all the liquid has been absorbed.

Meanwhile, heat some olive oil in a medium frying pan, Add the onions and cooked for 3-4 minutes, until softened. Add the pomegranate molasses and dries fruits and cook for another 3 minutes, until the dried fruits are softened and the onion are slightly brown and caramelised. Add the chickpeas to warm through and remove the pan from the heat. Pour the mixture into the bulgur wheat along with the pistachios, pomegranate seeds, coriander and lemon juice and stir to mix well. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

To serve, spoon the pilaf onto warmed individual plates along with the lamb cutlets.

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