It’s getting colder and if you’re anything like me – you’re looking for something ‘winter-ey’ to cook. Something new and a bit different, that’ll have you feeling satisfied and all warm inside. Something to make when you have friends or family popping over for dinner.
So many comfort food recipes end up in the ‘slow cooker’ category don’t they? And I’m as much of a fan as a slow cooked piece of meat as the next person. But sometimes if I’m short on time – I’m looking for something that’ll give me the same satisfaction as a roast dinner but in half the time. A third of the time. Gosh even a quarter of the time.
Introducing my fabulously easy and impressive ‘lamb and veggie tray bake’. Using loads of seasonal winter vege, the beauty of this dish is that it’s so easily adaptable. Make it for 2 people or 10 and you can use lamb cutlets, pork chops, chicken breast or even salmon fillets. So many different vege combo’s work too; think everything from zucchini to asparagus, Jerusalem artichoke to sweet potato, squash to parsnip.
Fresh herbs such as rosemary and thyme really make it sing and you can even cook the veggies in the morning so all you need to do when your guests arrive, is take them out of the fridge, nestle in your lamb cutlets and whack back in the oven. It’s so easy. So simple. So tasty.
The key lies in the sauce that I drizzle all over the top, as I lay it in the middle of the table to serve. A simple cheat’s aioli (that is delicious and goes with everything). It’s just whole egg mayo with a bit of garlic, lemon juice and salt and pepper. Viola! It transforms this dish from some basic roast meat and vege to something really special. And the caramelised balsamic vinegar as the finishing touch… Well what can I say? Just delicious.
You’ll never need another recipe again!
lamb + vegetable tray bake
- This recipe can be easily adapted depending on numbers. If you’re cooking for a crowd, divide the vege between two baking trays so that you can fit more in.
- I make this dish with salmon, white firm fish fillets, pork chops or chicken breast too and use whatever vege I have laying around. Everything from potatoes, sweet potato, pumpkin, carrots, swede, parsnip, zucchini, squash, Jerusalem artichokes, cauliflower, asparagus, capsicum and mushrooms. You just need to allow varying cooking times to make sure that all of the vege is cooked properly. Eg. spuds will take longer to cook than asparagus, so always give them a head start; and cut them in to smaller pieces than the other veggies such as sweet potato, that will cook more quickly.
- Can also be served with some crusty bread and a simple green side salad if you like. Or go all out and throw some feta and olives in the salad – makes for a delicious accompaniment.
- You’ll see that the recipe is all a bit “put it in the oven/take out of the oven” but I just want to get the point across that although the oven does all the hard work for you – you do need to keep an eye on the veggies and meat as with any tray bake, not every ingredient cooks at the same time. Once you get the hang of this and master it – you’ll realise how easy it really is.
This recipe serves 4 | see pics below
8 x lamb cutlets
2 x potatoes, peeled and diced
1 x sweet potato, cut in to chunks
1 x parsnip, peeled and roughly chopped
1 x carrot, peeled and roughly chopped
3 x cloves of garlic, crushed
1 x red capsicum, roughly chopped
1 x zucchini, roughly chopped
1 x spanish onion, sliced
Fresh rosemary and thyme (or failing that, use dried)
Salt and freshly cracked pepper
A good drizzle of olive oil
Cheat’s aioli, to serve
Caramelised balsamic vinegar, to serve
- Preheat the oven to 180℃.
- Add the potatoes, sweet potato, parsnip, carrot and garlic to a large roasting dish (or divide it between two if you need to so that it all fits). Add a generous amount of fresh rosemary and thyme, drizzle with olive oil and season well with salt and pepper. Whack it in the oven for approx 20-30 minutes or until the vege have had a good head start.
- Take the vege out of the oven and turn it all over. Add the capsicum, zucchini and onion and give it another once over with the olive oil and some salt and pepper. Pop it back in the oven to bake for another 20 minutes or until the vege is nearly looking ready.
- Take the tray out of the oven again, give the vege a good toss around and simply nestle in the lamb cutlets between gaps in your vege. Drizzle the cutlets with some olive oil and season with salt and pepper and whack it back in the oven for 8-10 minutes.
- Take the tray out and turn the cutlets over before giving it one last zap in the oven until you think everything is cooked to your liking.
- Serve drizzled with the aioli all over the top, and a good drizzle of the caramelised balsamic vinegar.
4 x tablespoons of whole egg mayonnaise
1 x clove of garlic, minced
A squeeze of fresh lemon juice
Salt and freshly cracked pepper
- Simply add all ingredients to a small mixing bowl and give it a good mix using a spoon. Taste it and season accordingly.
If you make this dish, please leave your comments below. xx