Saturday, March 3, 2012

Lamb Cutlets with Roasted Garlic Pasta & The First Week of Work

Woots!  I made it through one week of work!  I feel like celebrating!  How was work you ask me?  I certainly had my ups and downs throughout the week. 

The ups?  My new colleagues are great!  Friendly and cheerful people who are ever willing to help. I've also joined them in a run on Wednesday.. and I'm glad to have found a group who can encourage me to exercise!  

The downs?  Commuting commuting commuting... urgh!  The whole adjustment to working life has been tough too.  Everyone assumes that I have problems waking up in the morning.  That's not the issue though.. I've been waking up early all along to prepare breakfast for the better other.  I think the hard part is psyching myself up for a full day of work.  My morning routine now includes walking a longer distance to reach the office (instead of using the much faster backdoor). Somehow I find walking down the long corridor helps to set my frame of mind, and prepares me for the work day.  I find it rather tough sitting at my workstation for hours given that I used to be able to move around a lot in the past, whenever I want, wherever I want.  Somehow, the brain is a little rusty too.. So I find that I take much longer to do what I could do in a short time frame previously. 

My hubby has been bugging me about my blog for the past week.  He has been muttering "erinnish erinnish erinnish" in front of my face so much, so often, that I had thought about thwacking him on the head and shutting this whole blog down just to get at him! 

I've often thought about this blog and cooking the past week. Both of us have been living off 'impoverished' breakfasts consisting of dry toast with peanut butter & jam or canned tuna for the past five mornings.  Yep, gone are the weekday morning french toasts, bacon and eggs, omelettes. We simply can't afford the time to clean up. I used to take ancient China history during junior college, and there was a similar pattern. Arts and culture always flourished in times of peace and stability.   I liken that to my own state.  I had a cooking revolution when I wasn't working (tranquility, stability, zen...oohmm..) Now that I'm back in the 'battle', I think the arts & culture might pretty much get affected. 

I'm very thankful for all the encouragements posted by my friends in my last post (comments in facebook included!).  So, yes, your words are keeping me going!  Many thanks to fellow local blogger, Jacob, the man behind the successful foodie blog, who gave me tips on how to keep my posts coming... Well, I hope to be as disciplined as him one day..

But let me target one post per week for now.  So, here's my lunch last Sunday.. Yep.  I've decided to try photographing my dishes one week in advance, so that I don't go crazy cooking, photographing, editing photos, and writing during the weekend.  We had leftover lamb cutlets from our Valentine's Dinner, other than that, we only had onions and garlic at home.. So, roasted garlic pasta it had to be.  I've found a great recipe and good instructions (with a pictorial guide) on how to roast garlic from another foodie blog, I will share her link below.  I infused rosemary into oil for the pasta as I think rosemary and garlic make a lovely combination.  It was a pretty good lunch.. can't go wrong with lamb. 

And we love the new frying pan.. New as in newly bought.. because it really is an old pan.. It's a beauty, isn't it?

Lamb Cutlets and Roasted Garlic Pasta
(pasta recipe adapted from
serves 4

For the Lamb Cutlets
8 lamb cutlets, trimmed
olive oil for brushing
sea salt
cracked black pepper

For the Pasta
1 head of roasted garlic, cloves removed (recipe here) (Pls follow the link on how to roast garlic)
1 pound whole wheat pasta
1/4 cup olive oil (use leftover oil from roasted garlic recipe if possible)
1/4 – 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese (and more for topping)
generous amount of freshly ground black pepper
2 sprigs of rosemary

- Roast Garlic - please follow the link above. It takes about 30mins to roast them.
- Cook pasta according to packet instructions (around 10mins)
- Meanwhile, heat a non-stick frying pan over medium heat. Brush the lamb with oil and season with salt and pepper. Cook for 2-3 minutes on each side or until cooked to your liking.  Allow the lamb to rest.
- Heat oil and the sprigs of rosemary in a large saucepan on medium heat. (Place the rosemary sprigs in when the oil is cold.. the rosemary will slowly infuse into the oil when it heats up)
- Stir in roasted garlic cloves for a few minutes until they begin to sizzle. Turn heat off, remove the sprigs of rosemary, and combine pasta, cheese and pepper. Mix well and plate. Top with more cheese, pepper and a drizzle of olive oil.  Top the pasta with the lamb and serve.


  1. Hi Erin - Absolutely stunning photos! I think I need to step up my photography skills :)
    Love the lighting and composition of your pictures.

    And thanks so much for mentioning my recipes in your post. I'll be following your blog.

    1. Hi Barb,
      Sorry I took so long to reply! I've been so caught up with work that I decided to only reply all the comments only when I have the time to really sit down in front of the computer and give everyone my undivided attention. ;)

      Thanks for your comments! You have a great blog! Will be following yours too!

  2. Well done! Very appetizing. Your photos are wonderful!

    1. Thanks, Anna.. I love your photos too!! I think you have to teach me how to light!

  3. I love Lamb! But I never thought to serve lamb with pasta. I'll have to try it out. Unfortunately my husband doesn't like anything with bones- So I might have to make some adaptations.

    1. haha.. hmm.. i've never really come across any dish that has lamb and pasta together too.. but that's what I had in the fridge.. so being Chinese, I just randomly paired a carb staple with meat!

  4. love the pan, the food and the photos! very beautiful!

  5. Thanks for the kind words Erin ! =) I love the "new old" pan, it has a very hand me down feel to it. Like in a old cast iron pan that is handed down from grandmother - mother - daughter sort of way.

    1. you're welcome!
      haha.. yeah.. except that this was bought from a shop..
      Just in case you want to get pans like that for your photographs, i bought this from a shop in Adelphi. The shop's on the 2nd floor and they sell cooking and baking ware.. Interesting place.

  6. glad that you're enjoying your new work environment. :) im not a fan of lamb, but that roasted garlic pasta sounds good...

    1. Thanks, Michelle.. yeah. roasted garlic pasta is great for a sunny brunch ;)

  7. the pasta looks so YUM! I bookmarked this recipe for the pasta! I love this!

  8. Usage of roasted garlic is wonderful and this itself sounds so healthy!

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  10. Thank you for providing this delicious dish in a simple manner! I tried it with another delicacy Lamb Risotto and the combination was a hit! Would recommend it to every food enthusiast!

  11. pretty useful stuff, overall I consider this is really worth a bookmark, thanks China garlic exporter