This months 4 Ingredient Challenge turned out to be one of my favorites. Originally, the four randomly chosen ingredients appeared as though they would cause a little concern, but with some careful research I was able to come up with a couple great recipes to try out.
This months Challenge ingredients were:
- Lamb Chops
- Napa Cabbage
- Blood Orange
- Elbow Macaroni
The biggest hurdle was going to be how to incorporate elbow macaroni into a dish with the other ingredients. I also didn’t want “normal” elbow macaroni.
A trip to a local specialty food store led me to an elbow macaroni made from brown rice. One of the reasons I started the 4 Ingredient Challenge was that it would force me to get out of my “cooking box” and try different foods and flavors. This was a perfect opportunity to put this to work.
Using my new favorite “cook book” The Flavor Bible: The Essential Guide to Culinary Creativity I came up with an amazing and flavorful Bleu and Feta Cheese and Macaroni. No real recipe to post for this. Just make your favorite macaroni and cheese and use bleu and feta. One tip: I wanted a mild Feta that wasn’t to overpowering and the local Nugget Market hooked me up with a great Sheeps milk feta that worked like a charm.
Even though the mac and cheese wasn’t overly heavy I wanted to come up with some very light to eat with the lamp chops. When I think of cabbage the first thing that comes to mind is a slaw. So I made a Napa Cabbage and Radicchio Slaw with a Blood Orange Vinaigrette.
Napa Cabbage & Radicchio & Blood Orange Vinaigrette
- 1/3 cup Blood Orange juice, freshly squeezed if possible
- 1 1/2 teaspoons Rice Vinegar
- 1 teaspoon honey
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1/4 cup Greek Yogurt, plain
Mix all ingredients together until blended. Place in a sealed container and refrigerate for at least two hours. Vinaigrette can be made up to a day a head. When ready to serve mix shredded napa cabbage and radicchio with vinaigrette and serve.
I grilled the lamp chops using one of my Mangrates. Nothing fancy on them except a little kosher salt and freshly ground pepper. The lamb flavor was fantastic. This may have been one of my favorite 4 Ingredient Challenge meals. The combination all the way around worked better than I ever thought possible.
Additional participants in this month’s Ingredient Challenge include:
Paul Haight of No Excuses BBQ – ENTRY HERE
The No Excuses BBQ website was started in January of 2009 as a way to record the author’s goal of cooking outdoors at least once a week throughout the year and showing the results to the world. Somewhere along the way things got out of control…
Marc Van Der Wouw of Grill Adventures-ENTRY HERE
Grilladventures by broadcastmarc is started on march of 2010.I started the BBQ thing when I was 30,before that we eat a lot outside.have fun,but when the kids came in our life We start serious cooking.Most of it is realy healthy I think;-)The grill has a special place in my heart,We love to do things outside..Everything I make is an adventure,and sometimes we use the books.We try to grill as much as we can year round.
Chris of Nibble Me This – ENTRY HERE
The Nibble Me This website was created to share Chris’ misadventures in live fire cooking. ”I have no culinary training….I’m just entertaining myself with fire and food”.
Rich Wachtel of Grilling With Rich – ENTRY HERE
I am a young person breaking into the great world of barbecue. I enjoy everything about barbecue from the culture to the food. I am just a regular guy trying to have fun and enjoy the food and the process of cooking the food on the grill. At Grilling with Rich.com we go beyond just the normal cooking adventures and dig deeper into the large world of BBQ’ing, both professionally and for amateurs. Grilling with Rich focuses on the adventures of a regular guy and his quest to understand and learn as much as possible about the BBQ world.
Bob Fukushima of Bob’s Brew & Que – ENTRY HERE
Bob started Bob’s Brew and ‘Que in August of 2009 with the intent of sharing his views on food and drink. Originally focused on BBQ and Homebrew, it was inevitable that the influences of his upbringing in the San Francisco Bay Area and it’s wealth of ingredients as well as his heritage as an American of Japanese ancestry would help focus his blog, as it has his approach to food and drink.