Remember me? I know it’s been a while since my last blog post but from the get-go, this year has started off fairly busy. The first weekend started off with me being the official wedding photographer for a friend over 2 days of celebration; whilst it was a great experience for me, I won’t lie, I was extremely exhausted by the end of it all. For the week following the wedding, it was basically a mad dash to sort through the 2500+ photos I took, make/print DVD discs/case covers and burn the pictures onto the DVDs accordingly. All of this obviously on top of starting back at uni as a 2nd year PhD student, beginning a weekly photography project AND getting back into martial arts training.
I have anticipated a crazy year ahead so please accept my apologies for the irregularity to come. I’ve taken on a fair bit this year, let’s hope I get through to the other side unscathed.
Anywho, moving along onto the important stuff. The food! I’ve made this once before for Ant some time ago and every now and then we would reminisce about it being one of the memorable dishes I’ve cooked for him. I can’t remember how I stumbled upon it but I’m glad I have. I love pairing fruit and meat together. Now some of you are possibly thinking “Watermelon and lamb?! Do they really go together?” and you’d be surprised.
This watermelon salad is awesome! Saltiness from the olives is balanced with the sweet and juicy pieces of watermelon, and the Danish feta adds a depth of creaminess. It is definitely a refreshing salad, good enough to be served on its own on a warm day. On this particular occasion though, I wasn’t too happy with the lamb, I had bought a crummy piece of lamb backstrap to start off with and it was slightly overcooked. However, that won’t defer me from making this dish again, I just need to find a better butcher!
Adapted from here
1 tsp cumin seeds
2 sprigs (1 tbsp) fresh rosemary
1/2 tsp whole black peppercorns
1/4 tsp dried chilli flakes
grated zest of 1/2 lemon
50mL olive oil
2 x 250g lamb backstrap, trimmed
100g tzatziki, to serve
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp lemon juice
300g watermelon flesh, roughly chopped
60g Danish feta, crumbled
60g pitted kalamata olives
grated zest of 1/2 lemon
- Pound cumin, rosemary, peppercorns, chilli, zest and 1 tsp salt in a mortar and pestle, until coarsely ground. Stir in oil.
- Place lamb in a shallow dish, pour over marinade, then turn to coat well. Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours.
- Preheat the oven to 200C (428F). Over medium-high heat, sear the lamb on all sides, turning for 2-3 minutes.
- Transfer the lamb to a baking tray, then roast in the oven for 7 minutes for medium-rare, or until cooked to your liking. Set aside to rest for 5 minutes.
- Meanwhile, for the watermelon salad, whisk together the oil and lemon juice, then season and toss in a large bowl with the remaining ingredients.
- Slice the lamb backstrap and serve with the watermelon salad and tzatziki on the side.