Get ya knickers off – again

I’ve been told that you’ll realize you’ve become truly local in the Middle East when you stop explaining to friends at home that Friday is actually Saturday, and Saturday is now Sunday.

I’m obviously not a local yet.

Our weekend in Qatar is Friday and Saturday. Sunday mornings are no longer sleep ins and Sunday papers, they’re back to school and first day at work mornings. This isn’t the first time we’ve lived like this, it was the same in Libya – it makes no sense but I still miss my Sundays.

G made a trip to the vegetable market on Friday morning and came home with 2 crates of tomatoes and a mammoth amount of peas. He was making tomato sauce for the little travelers but the peas were a secret. You’ll have to wait until tomorrow night he said with one of those nudge nudge, wink wink smiles.

“It’s all part of this weekends get ya knickers off meal”.

If you weren’t here last weekend, here’s the story behind the “get ya knickers off meal”.

Saturday was fantastic. A sleep in. A little bit of unfinished homework, a couple of morning birthday parties, G spent some time in the kitchen and by 2.30 we were at the pool. It was one of those really gorgeous afternoons where everyone got along, we relaxed and had some giggles. There may have been an incident where someone wanted someone else’s goggles and a small fight broke out but I am choosing to forget that.

When we arrived home G headed into the kitchen, while I helped people into their pajamas. When I came downstairs there was one of these waiting for me:

After a day at the pool – prawns, mango, dill, lettuce with a little hint of cointreau.


The little travelers had pasta with the homemade tomato sauce.

G and I had this:

I will never be a food photographer so I haven’t done it justice but it was delicious. Lamb with mint peas and a pomegranate sauce. OMG – It was so good. The peas were fresh, and when they were combined with the pomegranates they all popped in your mouth like little taste sensations. The lamb was cooked to perfection.

Everyone else had strawberries and ice-cream for dessert but I was still in pomegranate heaven (there may have been champagne).

I’ve learnt from last week that I need to attach a recipe so I asked G to write it all down.

Spice mix (to rub in to the lamb) – ground cinnamon, ground black pepper, ground cardamon, ground coriander, salt

Peas, butter and mint

Pomegranate, white wine, nutmeg and cloves

Mix spice rub together

Roll lamb in the mix and leave in the fridge for 4 hours

Brown lamb on all sides in a heavy oven proof pan.  After browning place in over for 20-30 minutes

Allow to stand covered for 10 minutes before carving

For the peas, bring to a boil with a pinch of salt and sugar

Remove from boiling water after 3-5 minutes

In a separate pan, place a dob of butter and saute mint leaves, add peas and saute for 3-5 minutes.  add juices from the fry pan

For the pomegranate sauce.

In a saucepan, add seeds, white wine, cloves and nutmeg

Bring to a simmer, then leave to cool

In a blender, zap the mix to separate the flesh from the seeds – leave a few of the seeds aside to add to the sauce later.

Push the mix through a sieve to separate

Prior to serving add additional pomegranates to the sauce

Place peas on a plate, carve lamb and decorate with the pomegranate sauce

Now obviously I’m speaking metaphorically, but for me, this was a definite get your knickers off meal. I imagine if you were a vegetarian or not a lover of lamb…well, you’ve probably stopped reading by now  – but it was definitely one of my favourites.

How about you? Did you have a good weekend? Eat anything tasty? Would the lamb do it for you? 

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