Prep time: 20 mins Cook time: 2 hours Serves: 4
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 cup toasted whole blanched almonds Water
- 1kg boneless lamb shoulder, excess fat trimmed and cut into 5cm cubes
- 2 tsp Moroccan spice mix (also known as ras el hanout)
- 1tsp ground ginger
- 3tbs olive oil
- 2 medium brown onions
- 20 strands of saffron
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- 1 1/2 cups vegetable stock Salt and ground black pepper
- 3/4 cup dried apricots
- 3/4 pitted dates
- 3/4 cup water
- 2tbs honey
- 1/2 tsp Moroccan spice mix (also known as ras el hanout)
- 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
- Herbed couscous
- 1 1/2 cups dried couscous
- 2 1/4 cups vegetable stock
- 1/2 tsp salt
- In a mixing bowl, combine 2tsp of Moroccan spice blend, ground ginger, 1/2 tsp of salt and 2tbs of olive oil and mix well.
- Add the lamb pieces and massage the spice paste into the lamb for a few minutes.
- Heat the remaining tablespoon of olive oil in a tagine or heavy-based sauté pan and once hot, add the lamb pieces. Cook the lamb pieces until browned.
- Halve the onions and slice into 0.5cm pieces. Add to the browned meat and allow to simmer of medium heat until the onions become translucent.
- Add the saffron, cinnamon sticks and vegetable stock. Mix well and bring the sauce to a boil. Once boiling, reduce the heat to a gentle simmer, cover and cook the lamb for 2 hours. If needed, add a few tablespoons of water to the lamb if there is not enough liquid during cooking.
- Whilst the lamb is cooking, make the fruit compote by adding all the ingredients into a saucepan and bringing it to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer and continue to cook until the fruit compote is left with 2tbs of liquid. Remove from the heat and set aside.
- In the last 15 minutes of the lamb cooking, mix the fruit compote gently with the lamb pieces. Remove the lid and cook uncovered for the last 15 minutes on a vigorous simmer until the sauce slightly thickens. After 15minutes, remove from the heat, cover and leave to rest for 10 minutes.
- After 5 minutes, fluff the couscous grains with a fork and stir through the chopped herbs. Place in a serving platter.
- Garnish the lamb tagine with the toasted whole blanched almonds and serve hot with the couscous.
- Deboned lamb shanks or lamb leg would also work in place of the shoulder.
- Dates can be replaced with dried raisins or sultanas.
- This dish can be made in a shallow heavy-based saucepan with a well-fitted lid.