LAMB & THE DAN
Hermano Primero is the elder of Dos Hermanos.
When we were younger, it would be fair to say he made the most of his seniority. There were four of us. He was the tops, I was in the middle which inevitably led to torture that would put the regime of the Khmer Rouge to shame.
I recall being locked in the bathroom for what seemed like days all because I had transgressed some unwritten law. I also recall the time he declared himself lord high ruler of the house in the absence of my parents and took upon himself the name of “The Great Salami” We were all forced to our knees to pay obeisance while incanting the mantra ‘ Oh Salami, Oh Salami” I still bear the emotional scars.
All that being said, there were some benefits. As I grew older and more interested in food, he was earning more than I was. A great deal more. He was always more than happy to spread the love and take me out for meals in restaurants for which I barely had the money to tip the coat check let alone buy food.
He also had a massive record collection which, despite his predilection for obscure 1980’s reggae had much in it to intrigue a young boy coming into musical sentience. I hold him responsible for my obsession with Frank Zappa, my acceptance of the importance of 1970’s prog rock and, most of all, my enjoyment of Steely Dan.
In the early 1980’s being a child of Punk, I thought Steely Dan was elevator music. I thought it was everything I was supposed to hate and so did. But, as I grew older and found myself listening to young folks music and saying things like “ in my day songs had decent words” ( words like “White riot, I wanna Riot” Shakespeare, right?) I began to appreciate the craft and sheer effort that went into every Steely Dan record.
So now, we both love The Dan and it forms the soundtrack to the every Sunday lunch we manage to squeeze out of our hectic schedules. With sun streaming in through the windows, a martini in hand and a large roasted something in the oven, the swirling, detailed sounds of Gaucho, Katy Lied or Can’t buy a Thrill take some beating.
Today’s menu, a shoulder of lamb from BM, blade bone removed, stuffed with lemons, garlic and oregano and baked for six hours.
Simple salads of beets, tomato & mozzarella and yoghurt with cucumber and mint. Suitably served by a well made martini, a rose from Provence and half bottle Paul Cluver Late Harvest Reisling.
And, of course, a couple of spare place settings for our favourite Sunday guests, Mr D. Fagen and Mr W. Becker.