Tagines are traditional earthenware cooking pots used all over Morocco. I don’t have one at home, so I make and serve this in a large ovenproof pan instead. I like to use middle neck of lamb, cut into chunks and left on the bone for flavour, but both diced leg and shoulder work well, too. The dried apricots and saffron add fantastic flavour and colour to the dish.
1.25 kg/2lb 12oz stewing lamb, cut into big chunks
4 tbsp olive oil
2 onions, finely chopped
good pinch saffron strands
large knob of root ginger, peeled and grated
6 garlic cloves, chopped
4 tomatoes (fresh or canned), each cut into 6
2 tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp coriander seeds
1 cinnamon stick
250g pack ready-to-eat apricots
handful chopped parsley, to serve
clear honey, to serve
Tomato, mint & pine nut couscous, to serve
Tomato, mint & pine nut couscous
600ml hot chicken or vegetable stock
100g drained SunBlush or sundried tomatoes in oil
couple handfuls toasted pine nuts
freshly chopped mint leaves
Season the lamb well. Heat 2 tbsp olive oil in a large casserole, brown the meat all over, then remove and set aside. You’ll need to do this in several batches. Add another 2 tbsp oil to the pan, then fry the onions, saffron and ginger over a medium heat until the onions are soft and golden. Tip in the garlic, tomatoes and spices, then cook for another min until fragrant.
Tip in browned lamb, then just cover with cold water (about 600ml). Put the lid on, bring to the boil slowly and simmer gently for 1 hr. Add the apricots, then simmer uncovered for another 30 mins until the meat is tender and the sauce has thickened slightly. Season to taste, then scatter over the parsley and finish with a little honey trickled on top. Serve with Tomato, mint & pine nut couscous.
Put couscous in a large bowl and cover with the hot chicken or vegetable stock. Cover with cling film, then set aside for about 10 mins or until all of the stock has been absorbed. Meanwhile, drain and roughly chop the drained SunBlush or sundried tomatoes in oil.
Fluff up the couscous with a fork, season to taste, then stir in the tomatoes and a couple handfuls toasted pine nuts. When ready to serve, stir through plenty of freshly chopped mint leaves.
426 kcalories, protein 38g, carbohydrate 17g, fat 23g, saturated fat 10g, fibre 3g, sugar 15g, salt 0.61g