For our New Year's Eve dinner, I wanted to make something special without spending hours in the kitchen. This meal comes together relatively quickly, considering it's a three course dinner. After roasting the lamb, leave the oven on and pop the bread in the oven to warm it up before serving.
Each recipe is included separately below. Here's how I would recommend putting the dinner together:
1. Prep the ingredients for all recipes.
2. Start the truffles by heating the coconut, sweetened condensed milk, butter, and vanilla extract. Chill in the fridge until ready.
3. Make the lamb and pop it into the oven. This will give you about 45-60 minutes to prepare the risotto and finish the dessert.
4. Once the risotto is done, finish up the dessert.
5. Carve the rack of lamb and enjoy!
Skill Level: Easy
Time to Make: 40 minutes
LAMB INGREDIENTS AND RECIPE
1 cleaned 8-rib lamb rack
1/4 cup whole grain Dijon mustard
1 clove of garlic
1 sprig each of rosemary, sage, and marjoram
3 sprigs thyme
2 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
Prep Ingredients: Preheat oven to 450ºF. In a food processor, combine the garlic and herbs and pulse until roughly chopped. Add the mustard and extra virgin olive oil and pulse until a smooth paste forms.
Pat the lamb rack dry and place on a roasting rack. Season with salt and pepper. Smear the paste all over the fleshy part of the rack. Cook for 15 minutes. Reduce heat to 325ºF and cook for an additional 25-30 minutes or until a thermometer reads 130ºF to 140ºF for rare to medium rare.
Carve the lamb and serve two ribs for each person. Enjoy!
SAFFRON RISOTTO INGREDIENTS AND RECIPE
2 1/2 quarts low sodium chicken stock
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 medium onion
One large pinch of saffron
3 cups arborio rice
1 1/2 cups dry white wine
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
Salt and freshly ground pepper
Chives for garnish
Prep Ingredients: Mince the onion. Finely chop the chives and set aside.
In a large saucepan, bring the chicken stock to a simmer over low heat. Cover and keep hot.
In a heavy 6-quart pot, melt 2 tablespoons of butter over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 5 minutes. Crumble in the saffron threads and cook for 1 minute until fragrant and bright yellow. Add the rice and stir to coat thoroughly with butter and onions, about 2 minutes.
Increase the heat to high and then add the wine, scraping up any brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Cook, stirring regularly, until evaporated.
Add enough hot stock to cover the rice and bring to a boil, stirring. Reduce the heat to medium. Cook, stirring the rice constantly, until the stock has been absorbed. Continue adding the stock, 1 ladle at a time, and stirring until it is absorbed before adding more. The sauce will continue to thicken and become velvety as the the rice continues to cook. Make sure you stir the risotto constantly. Once the rice is tender and the liquid is absorbed, turn off the heat. This process takes about 25 minutes.
To serve: Remove the risotto from the heat and stir in the cheese and remaining two tablespoons of butter. Divide between bowls and garnish with chives. Enjoy!
STRAWBERRY BEIJINHOS (Brazilian Coconut Truffles)
1 cup sweetened condensed milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon butter, softened
3 cups desiccated coconut
1/2 cup strawberries, chopped
Prep Ingredients: Chop the strawberries into small pieces (I cut my strawberries into sixths) and set aside in a bowl.
First, make the truffle base. In a small pot, combine the sweetened condensed milk, vanilla extract, butter, and two cups of coconut. Turn the heat to medium high and cook, stirring constantly, for about 5 minutes. Place the entire pot in the fridge and chill for 15-30 minutes (or longer).
Place a piece of parchment paper on a baking sheet. Pour one cup of coconut into a small bowl. Take a small piece of chilled truffle base and flatten into a small circle in your palms. Add a piece of strawberry and, using your palms, roll the truffle around the strawberry. You may need to use a touch of water to seal the edges. Once sealed, roll the truffle in the coconut and place on the baking sheet. Continue the process until you run out of truffle mixture.
Chill for 1 hour to allow them to set up. Serve at room temperature. Enjoy!
Designer and photographer living in NYC. I work as a design manager in ed tech and I make tasty recipes in my spare time!