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Watch Mark Stark, Executive Chef of Willi’s Wine Bar, cook up his famous Tunisian Roasted Carrots and Moroccan Style BBQ Lamb Chops in this behind-the-scenes video where you join Mark in the kitchen at Willi’s and see for yourself how he artistically layers flavors to create these delectable dishes.
These two dishes are longtime favorites among customers and staff and have been on the menu since Willi’s first opened in 2002.
This video will have your mouth watering and it may even inspire you to get in the kitchen and try making them yourself. We’ve included the recipes below so you can do just that. Or you can just come in to Willi’s and we’d be delighted to make them for you.
TUNISIAN ROASTED CARROTS WITH TOASTED PINE NUTS, MINT & OLIVES
2 pounds baby rainbow carrots, scrubbed, tops removed
1/4 cup honey
1/2 tablespoon cinnamon
1/2 tablespoon cardamom seeds
Olive oil, to coat
Salt and white pepper, to taste
1/2 cup mixed olives, whole
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/2 bunch mint leaves
2 tablespoons pine nuts, toasted
3 tablespoons butter
1 each small orange
1/2 cup crumbled feta
Toss the carrots with oil, salt, pepper, honey, cinnamon, and cardamom. Place in a roasting pan, or baking dish just big enough to hold in one layer. Cut the orange in half then squeeze the juice over the carrots, add the orange halves into the pan with the carrots. Cover with foil and roast until just tender, about 25 minutes.
Remove the foil and cool the carrots until ready to serve. This can be done the day before and refrigerated.
When ready to serve, melt the butter in a large pan to fit the carrots in a shallow layer. When the butter just starts to brown, add the carrots. Place in a 400-degree oven and cook until warmed through and the carrots are slightly browned. Remove the pan and toss in the olives, pine nuts, mint, and lemon juice.
MOROCCAN STYLE BBQ’D LAMB CHOPS WITH MINT CHUTNEY & PRESERVED LEMON COUSCOUS
Serves 8 (with lots of extra BBQ sauce to use on ribs or chicken)
8 each Double Cut Lamb Chops
1 cup mint leaves
6 each scallion, chopped
3 tablespoons parsley leaves, chopped
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon curry powder
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 each garlic clove, chopped
1/2 cup olive oil
MOROCCAN BBQ SAUCE
1 1/4 cups honey
1/2 cup rice wine vinegar
1/2 cup ketchup
1/2 cup soy sauce
3/4 cup lemon juice
1 each cinnamon stick, broken up
2 each star anise
2 each garlic cloves, smashed
1 1/2 teaspoons cardamom seeds
1/2 teaspoon chili flakes
1 1/2 teaspoons black peppercorns
1 1/2 teaspoons dried lavender
1/2 teaspoon fresh ginger, chopped
1/2 teaspoon whole cloves
1/2 bunch cilantro
1/2 teaspoon salt
PRESERVED LEMON COUSCOUS SALAD
2 cups couscous
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 cup orange juice
1 cup water
1/2 cup golden raisins
½ each preserved lemon, cleaned and minced
1/4 cup toasted slivered almonds
1 bunch scallion, sliced
MARINATING THE MEAT: Place all mint chutney ingredients in a blender with the olive oil and puree until smooth. Toss the lamb chops with just enough chutney to coat and marinate for four hours or overnight. Save the remainder of the mint chutney to use later.
MOROCCAN BBQ SAUCE: Place all ingredients in a sauce pot and simmer on medium heat until the sauce is reduced to the consistency of a light glaze. Strain and cool.
COUSCOUS SALAD: Place dry couscous in a bowl and add the olive oil. Mix the couscous until it is coated with the oil. Bring the orange juice and the water to a boil. Season the liquid with salt and pepper. Pour the hot liquid over the couscous, add the raisins and preserved lemon, then stir once. Cover with plastic wrap and let sit until couscous has absorbed all the liquid. Remove plastic and fluff the couscous. Check seasoning and adjust if necessary.
TO FINISH THE DISH: Season lamb chops with salt and pepper; grill to desired doneness over medium hot grill, or sear in a hot pan on both sides and finish in a 350° oven. While chops are cooking, toss toasted almonds and sliced scallions into couscous; add a little fresh orange juice and more extra virgin olive oil if salad seems dry. Place salad in the center of a serving platter. Arrange the chops around couscous; drizzle with the Moroccan BBQ sauce and remaining mint chutney. Any leftover BBQ Sauce will keep in the refrigerator for 1 month.