This dish has Fall written all over it. Eating a stew that's been simmering all day in the crock pot on a chilly night - that's what I look forward to as the days get shorter and the nights get colder. To make this dish, you don't have to have a tagine. In case you're wondering, a tagine is a conical shaped pot with a wide, shallow base and a tall lid fitting snugly inside. As the food cooks, steam rises into the cone, condenses, and then trickles down the sides back into the dish. Ideal for stews and, of course, tagines. It's cool to have if you want to wow your dinner guests, but realistically I don't have enough room in my kitchen cupboards. So a dutch oven, or a crock pot, will serve the same purpose and you probably already have at least one of those. I've outlined two different ways you can make this dish depending on time constraints and equipment you own. You can serve the lamb with spiced millet (recipe below) or, for a Paleo-friendly version, serve with cauliflower rice.
Moroccan Lamb Tagine - Two Ways
- 2 Tbsp coconut oil
- 2 white onions, chopped
- 5 cloves of garlic, chopped
- 1 tsp ground ginger or 1 Tbsp fresh grated
- 2 tsp turmeric
- sea salt, as needed
- 3 lb. lamb shoulder or leg, boneless, trimmed of fat, cut into 2 inch pieces
- 2 cups water or vegetable stock
- 4 carrots, bias cut
- 15 oz. can of diced tomatoes with juice
- 29 oz. can of chickpeas
- 1 cup dried apricots, quartered
- 1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
- 6 oz. Mediterranean-type olives, such as kalamata, pitted and halved
- 3 Tbsp lemon juice and 1 Tbsp zest
If you're short on time....
Use a Pressure Cooker and Braising Pan:
- Salt the lamb pieces.
- Add 1 Tbsp oil to the pressure cooker and seal the lamb pieces until browned.
- Add 1 cup of stock or water.
- Place the lid on the pressure cooker and bring up to pressure. Turn down to low heat and allow to cook for 1 and 1/2 hours.
While the lamb is cooking....
- Heat braising pan on medium heat.
- Add 1 Tbsp oil and toss in onions. Saute until shiny.
- Add carrots and saute until they soften.
- Add turmeric, ginger, and fresh garlic and let cook for about 1 minute.
- Add 1 cup of stock and the can of diced tomatoes with juice.
- Salt to fit.
- Turn down the heat to low. Cover the pan and let simmer for 1 hour.
Once lamb is done, add the lamb and juice to the braising pan. Let cook all together on low for 20-30 minutes. Add chickpeas, dried apricots, and olives and cook for about 10 more minutes until they soften. When you're ready to serve, stir in lemon juice, lemon zest, fresh cilantro and a grind of black pepper.
If you've got all day...
Using a Crock Pot:
- Add onion, carrots, ginger, garlic, turmeric, lamb, stock, tomatoes and salt to the crock pot.
- Let simmer on low for all day, or 8 hours.
- About 10 minutes before you're ready to eat, add the chickpeas, apricots and olives.
- When you're ready to serve, stir in lemon juice, lemon zest, fresh cilantro and a grind of black pepper.
- 1 cup millet
- 3 cups of water or broth
- big pinch of salt
- pinch of cinnamon, curry powder and all spice
Add all the ingredients to a saucepan. Bring up on high heat to a boil and then down to low. Simmer for about 35 - 40 minutes until all the liquid has absorbed.
Serve it up!