Grilled Lamb Chops & Mediterranean CouscousA meal that requires NO WORK, yet produces glamorous results: an ideal meal, essentially. The “Grilled Lamb Chops with Mint & Basil Sauce” and the “Mediterranean Couscous with Peas,” from the March/April 2013 issue of Cuisine at Home (recipes below), gave me rare and magnificent lamb after broiling for a mere 8 minutes. The mint dressing was just tart enough and just sweet enough to be totally addictive. And the couscous popped with peas and pine nuts.

Grilled Lamb Chops with Mint & Basil Sauce
Cuisine at Home, March/April 2013
Makes 4 servings

For the Sauce, Purée:
1/2 cup packed fresh mint leaves
1/2 cup packed fresh basil leaves
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup white wine vinegar
2 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
2 Tbsp. sugar
1 tsp. kosher salt

For the Lamb, Broil:
8 lamb loin chops, seasoned with salt and black pepper (5-6 oz. each)

Heat broiler on high, with the rack set 6 inches from the element. For the sauce, purée the mint, basil, oil, vinegar, lemon juice, sugar, and salt in a food processor, then set aside. Place the seasoned lamb chops on an oiled grill rack, atop a foil-lined baking tray. Broil for 4 minutes per side, remove from oven and tent with foil for 5 minutes. Serve the chops with the sauce.

Mediterranean Couscous with Peas
Cuisine at Home, March/April 2013
Makes 4 servings

1 cup water
1 tsp. olive oil
1 cup dry couscous
1/2 cup frozen green peas

Stir In:
1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
1/4 cup pine nuts, toasted
2 Tbsp. minced lemon zest
salt and black pepper to taste

Boil water and oil in a saucepan. Pour this water over the couscous and peas in a bowl; stir, then cover with plastic wrap. Allow couscous to stand until liquid is absorbed, 4-5 minutes. Fluff couscous with a fork. Stir in the feta, pine nuts, and zest; season with salt and pepper.

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The mint/basil sauce gets pureed in the food processor. How did we ever make dressings without a food processor? The vinegar and lemon give me a tartness and the mint gives me a sweetness. The sauce partners perfectly with the rare, luscious lamb.

Couscous never asks for any fussing. I did toast my pine nuts in a bit of olive oil in a fry pan, because I like them that way. I added 1 1/2 tsp. kosher salt and 1/2 tsp. black pepper to the fluffed couscous. And the feta cheese was right on.

Fresh Basil (1/2 cup) = $2.28
Lamb Loin Chops (8) = $36.69
Feta Cheese (1/2 cup) = $2.32
Pine Nuts (1/4 cup) = $6.24
Lemons (2) = .58¢

PREP TIMES: eat this meal after less than 30 minutes of prep and cooking
succulent, rare lamb dressed with tart/sweet mint/basil, while peas, pine nuts, and feta decorate the couscous

Next time, I will cook the “Chicken and Parsnip Pulao,” from the April/May 2013 issue of Fine Cooking. This will be my chance to exploit Bhutan Red Rice. Come back to my site next week, to see what happens.