my latest crush

Last week I finally bought a copy of Nigel Slater’s “Real Fast Food,” and I have to say I fell immediately in love with it. I love the fact that it’s compact enough to fit in my (admittedly large) purse so I can peruse it on the subway, and I love the fact that it’s less a collection of “recipes” and more a collection of really fantastic ideas on how to put together ingredients to get something quick and delicious on the table. Life has been hectic lately, and I’ve begun to feel like I’ve fallen into a bit of a rut, but reading this book has been rejuvenating.

Mike, too, has become a big fan of this book, and when he spotted this recipe for Kidneys Cooked with Sherry, he asked me to work it into our meal plan sooner rather than later. I put some fingerlings on to boil when I got home from work last night and then left the kitchen to my husband. As promised, the dish came together quickly and with a minimal amount of fuss, and it was just delicious. Now, if you’re not a fan of organ meats, the texture and rich flavor of the kidneys might be a bit of a challenge, but I found them to be much more mellow than, say, chicken livers, and the sweetness of the onions and sherry provided a lovely contrast.

Dinner:  February 20, 2008

Kidneys Cooked with Sherry
(for 2, with mashed potatoes)
From Real Fast Food by Nigel Slater

8 lamb kidneys, halved and cores removed*
Juice of 1 lemon
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1 tablespoon flour
1 wineglass of dry sherry (about 1/2 cup)
1 tablespoon chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
Freshly ground black pepper

Drop the kidneys into the lemon juice and mix well. Leave for at least 10 minutes.

Heat the olive oil in a shallow pan and cook the onion until soft and translucent, about 5-7 minutes. Add the garlic and cook briefly over a medium heat. Turn the heat up to boil away any liquid. Drain the kidneys, dry them on a paper towel, and add them to the pan. Brown the kidneys on all sides, then stir in the flour and add the sherry with an equal amount of water. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 10 minutes. Add the parsley, taste, and season with salt and pepper.

*The package of kidneys we picked up over the weekend was a little over half a pound and contained 4 kidneys. We felt like we had enough to satisfy us, but we would have liked more so next time around we’ll be sure to buy two packages.

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