on the lamb

A few years ago, an article in the New York Times reported that goat is the most widely consumed meat in the world. The writer of that article was apparently totally wrong–that honor belongs to pork–surprising since two major religions ban the stuff. I suppose the rest of us are gobbling bacon like gangbusters to compensate.

Though never one to refute the power of pork, I’m here today to extol a different message: eat more goat. Or lamb, whichever.

Though not the most prolific, ovine meat is certainly a staple of many international cuisines. Since Americans seem to love meat any way we can get it, I find it surprising that the mutton family isn’t a more popular protein on American plates.

It was, however, a popular item on my plate last night. Lamb shoulder chop, marinated in lemon juice, olive oil, grainy mustard, smashed garlic, salt, pepper and Herbs de Provence, seared in a dry cast-iron skillet, 5 minutes on one side, 4 on the other, makes a quick & different week night meal. The lamb came out juicy & succulent, perfectly pink throughout with a bit of charred crust at the edge.

I served mine with sweet potatoes, mashed with butter, ricotta and allspice, plus a dash of maple syrup, salt & pepper and an arugula salad tossed in a lemon-maple-olive oil vinaigrette.

So my message today is this: next time you’re at the meat counter, forego the pound of ground chuck and make it a lamb loaf instead.