Recipe from chef/owner Matt Richman
926 Turquoise St., Pacific Beach
This intimate bistro is fast becoming a popular dining destination for foodies. The upscale, yet casual, seasonal cuisine reflects the gastronomic experiences of chef and owner Matt Richman, who blends California ingredients with Mediterranean and Latino flavors.
“Addition on a plate” is how fans describe the meaty, minty Lamb Bucatini created by chef/owner Matthew Richman. Enjoy it on a cool, fall evening with a hearty Brunello or Sangiovese wine.
1 ½ pounds boneless lamb shoulder, trimmed of fat and sinew and cut into 1-inch cubes
½ teaspoon sea salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
¼ cup olive oil
3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
½ teaspoon dried chili flakes
1 bay leaf
1 cup red wine
2 28-ounce cans whole plum tomatoes, roughly chopped
1 tablespoon finely chopped, fresh, flat-leaf parsley
Fresh or packaged bucatini or other spaghetti-like pasta to serve 4
1 tablespoon salt
1 pound fresh ricotta cheese
½ teaspoon chopped fresh mint
Zest of one lemon
- Combine diced lamb with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper in a non-reactive bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for a minimum of 2 hours.
- Heat olive oil in a heavy-based saucepan over medium heat. Add garlic, chili flakes and bay leaf; stir while cooking for 1 minute. Turn the heat to high and add lamb, stirring occasionally until brown, about 3-4 minutes for each side.
- Add the red wine and cook until it’s almost evaporated, about 8 to 10 minutes.
- Add chopped plum tomatoes and juices. Bring to boil, then cover with a lid, reduce heat to low and cook for 2 hours. Stir the mixture occasionally and add a little extra water if the mixture dries out.
- About half way through the cooking, taste the sauce and add salt if necessary.
- After two hours of cooking, remove the saucepan from the stove and allow the sauce to cool slightly. Use a slotted spoon to transfer the lamb chunks from the pan to a clean chopping board. Use two forks to shred the tender meat and then place it back into the saucepan. Add chopped parsley and stir well. Set aside while you cook the pasta.
- Fill a large pot with water, add salt and bring to a boil. If using fresh pasta, cook it for several minutes until it is al dente. If using packaged pasta, cook it according to the package instructions.
- While the pasta is cooking, combine the ricotta cheese, mint and lemon zest in a bowl. Season with salt and pepper if desired.
- Drain the cooked pasta. Toss it with the lamb sauce and serve immediately with a spoonful of the ricotta mixture.