Food & Dining

Lamb chops special enough for Easter, but good any night

These spiced lamb chops are good for any occasion, not just holidays.
These spiced lamb chops are good for any occasion, not just holidays.

Allspice, cinnamon and a touch of cayenne pepper add a sweet and spicy flavor to loin lamb chops. This is a quick dish for a weekday meal and is also special enough for an Easter Sunday dinner.

Loin lamb chops are used here, but rib chops or lamb steaks cut from the leg can be used. The latter is a slice of lamb that is cut through the leg to make a steak about one to one and a half inches thick with a round slice of bone in the center. It is sometimes displayed in the meat case or you can ask the butcher to cut it for you.

Here are the ingredients you’ll need for tonight’s dinner in minutes.

▪ Two 7-ounce loin lamb chops.

▪ One teaspoon ground allspice.

▪ One teaspoon ground cinnamon.

▪ Quarter teaspoon cayenne pepper.

▪ Olive oil spray.

Remove visible fat from the lamb. Mix allspice, cinnamon and cayenne pepper together. Spread the mixture on both sides of chops. Heat a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat and spray with olive oil spray. Add the chops and brown two minutes, turn chops over and brown two minutes.

Lower the heat to low, cover with a lid and cook five minutes. A meat thermometer should read 125 degrees for rare, 145 degrees for medium.

Makes two servings. Per serving: 270 calories (41 percent from fat) 12.4 g fat (3.8 g saturated, 5.4 g monounsaturated), 114 mg cholesterol, 35.7 g protein, 2.4 g carbohydrates, 1 g fiber, 115 mg sodium.

Mint couscous

▪ One cup water.

▪ Half a cup precooked whole-grain couscous.

▪ One cup thinly sliced onion.

▪ One medium tomato cut into one-inch cubes (about one cup).

▪ Half a cup fresh mint leaves torn into small pieces.

▪ Two teaspoons olive oil.

▪ Salt and freshly ground black pepper.

Bring water to a boil and stir in couscous and onion. Cover and remove from heat. Let sit five minutes. Add tomato, mint, oil and salt and pepper to taste. Fluff with a fork and cover until needed.

Makes two servings. Per serving: 243 calories (19 percent from fat) 5 g fat (0.8 g saturated, 2.2 g monounsaturated), no cholesterol, 7 g protein, 42.6 g carbohydrates, 4.5 g fiber, 12 mg sodium.