Mack's Corner

This Week

Friday Night Lights

After watching the movie "Undefeated", I was thinking about another movie,  "Friday Night Lights". It's the story of a high school football team in Odessa Texas. High School football is a big deal in west Texas, so much so that after this team loses a game there are 10 different "For Sale" signs in the coach's front yard before he gets home that night. He had all kinds of trouble, a call in radio show where people wanted to elect him president when he won and people who thought he was the dumbest coach in the world when he lost. He had boosters who threatened him before each game and parents who wanted to fight when their kid didn't get to play as much as they wanted. Every day was a party or a funeral depending on how the team had played last Friday.
But he kept telling his players to never give up, no matter how weird the people in the school and the town get, never give up…. So he's playing for the state Championship, its half time and he's getting beat by a team that looks like they can't be beat. They're bigger, faster and stronger than his team. He says one thing to his team: "As long as you know that you did everything you could do, and that you did the best you could do, then you will look back on this with joy, no matter what happens." 

I remember John Robinson, the football coach at USC, one time in the Rose Bowl, only seconds left in the game, he's behind and has to score a touchdown to win and he calls timeout. Everybody is all excited, fans are cheering, the QB runs over to the sidelines to talk to the coach and to get the next play. He runs up to Robinson and Robinson says "Don't
you just love this" with a big grin on his face.   

Gods like that: He's not asking you to win every time, he's asking you to play as hard as you can and be in the fight. The fun part is giving everything you have and knowing that you did. The only losers are the ones that never wanted to get in the game. God never promised it would be easy, just that he would be there with us …..

Maybe I'll go find a pick-up game. I know I've got a football someplace ….


Cooking 220 - 2 pans, 2 burners, 20 minutes:

I love Susan Goin, she's one of the great chefs in Los Angeles. Her Restaurants are Lucques and AOC. Her cookbook "Sunday Suppers at Lucques" is one of my favorite cookbooks. Lucques serves family style supper on Sunday night.. just like being at grandma's… Here's her leg of lamb recipe for Easter… very easy and only 2 pans…..

The trick with leg of lamb is to cut off as much fat as you can. The fat is what makes it greasy and gamey ..

Mustard-Crusted Lamb


3 tablespoons unsalted butter

3/4 cup finely diced shallots

1 teaspoon thyme

3/4 cup dry vermouth (any white wine will work or just use water)

3/4 cup Dijon mustard

1 large egg

1 tablespoon chopped tarragon

Salt and freshly ground pepper

One 5-pound boneless leg of lamb, trimmed and butterflied

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

2 cups bread crumbs mixed with 3 tablespoons browned/melted butter,
2 tablespoons chopped parsley and 1 tablespoon chopped thyme

Preheat the oven to 350°. In a skillet, melt the butter. Add the shallots and thyme and cook over moderate heat for 2 minutes. Add the vermouth and reduce by half. Transfer to a bowl; whisk in the mustard, egg, tarragon and a pinch of salt and pepper.

Set the lamb fat side down and season with salt and pepper. Rub one- fourth of the mustard mixture on the meat. Roll up; tie at two-inch intervals with kitchen string.

Heat the oil in a roasting pan. Add the lamb and sear over high heat until browned all over, 8 minutes. Transfer to a plate and remove the strings. Rub with the remaining mustard mixture and pat the bread crumb coating all over. Roast the lamb in the roasting pan for 50 minutes, until an instant-read thermometer inserted in the center registers 130° for medium-rare.(140 at most, never past 150) Let rest for 15 minutes before carving.

And you thought leg of lamb was hard!!!! … this is too easy and you'll look like a pro… The big trick is to be sure you don't let the meat get past 140 degrees. That's why she stops at 130, because it will continue to rise as the meat rests… SOOO After 40 min start checking with an instant read meat thermometer (Kroger $1.50) .. Stick it in the big part of the meat on the top and give it a min and see what it says… if it's not there yet, give it 10 more min and check again. Stick it in a different place…..


How about saving a kid's life!!

When you give Platelets it's like giving St Jude $700 - $1000. If we don't give them, they have to buy them.

Giving Platelets is like giving blood, it just takes longer (1 1/2 hours) and you get all of your blood back (so you can do it every week if you want) . I know it's a long trip to go all the way down to St Jude, but you may be saving a kid's life . plus you get to watch a movie while you're there. Call Kim at 901.595.2024 and she'll setup an appointment and treat you like family. Just tell her you're from Hope.

Directions: From Poplar, turn north on Third Street, then right on Lauderdale/Jackson Ave (first right after you go under the expressway). Enter through the north guard gate (you'll see the Danny Thomas Pavilion. Gold top).

Tell the guard at the gate that you are here to donate blood. The guard will instruct you where to park. You will then enter the hospital by the red side door closest to the blood donor parking lot. The Blood Donor Center is in the southwest corner of the hospital on the ground floor.

Appointment times are generally available Monday through Friday from 8:00am to 4:00pm. Except on Tuesdays they start at 9:15am.

See you this weekend. Bring a friend. It's going to be great!!!



Posted by Mack Oates at 6:55 AM