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Moroccan Lamb Tagine

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Moroccan Lamb Tagine is a traditional North African dish known for its rich flavors and tender meat slow-cooked with aromatic spices, dried fruits, and nuts. This hearty and comforting dish is typically cooked in a tagine, a cone-shaped clay pot that helps infuse the ingredients with complex flavors. Here’s how to prepare Moroccan Lamb Tagine at home with a recipe that captures the essence of Moroccan cuisine.


Ingredients:

For the Lamb Tagine:

  • 2 pounds lamb shoulder or leg, cut into cubes
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground paprika
  • Pinch of saffron threads (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 2 cups beef or lamb broth
  • 1 cup dried apricots, halved
  • 1/2 cup golden raisins
  • 1/2 cup slivered almonds, toasted
  • Fresh cilantro or parsley, chopped, for garnish

For Serving:

  • Cooked couscous or rice

Instructions:

1. Prepare the Lamb:

  1. Season the lamb cubes generously with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
  2. In a large tagine or heavy-bottomed pot, heat olive oil over medium-high heat.
  3. Add the lamb cubes in batches and brown them on all sides. Remove the lamb cubes and set them aside.

2. Cook the Aromatics:

  1. In the same tagine or pot, add chopped onion and cook until softened and translucent, about 5 minutes.
  2. Add minced garlic and cook for another 1-2 minutes until fragrant.
  3. Stir in ground cumin, ground coriander, ground cinnamon, ground ginger, ground turmeric, ground paprika, and saffron threads (if using). Cook for 1 minute until the spices are aromatic.

3. Simmer the Tagine:

  1. Return the browned lamb cubes to the tagine or pot.
  2. Stir in tomato paste until well combined with the lamb and spices.
  3. Pour in beef or lamb broth, stirring to scrape up any browned bits from the bottom of the tagine.
  4. Bring the mixture to a simmer. Cover with a lid and reduce the heat to low. Let it simmer gently for 1.5 to 2 hours, or until the lamb is tender and cooked through.

4. Add Dried Fruits and Nuts:

  1. Add dried apricots and golden raisins to the tagine. Stir well to combine.
  2. Cover and continue to simmer for another 30 minutes, or until the dried fruits are plumped and tender.

5. Toast Almonds and Serve:

  1. In a separate dry skillet, toast slivered almonds over medium heat until lightly golden and fragrant, stirring frequently to prevent burning.
  2. Sprinkle toasted almonds over the Moroccan Lamb Tagine before serving.

6. Serve:

  1. Remove the tagine from heat.
  2. Garnish with chopped fresh cilantro or parsley.
  3. Serve Moroccan Lamb Tagine hot, accompanied by cooked couscous or rice.

7. Optional Serving Suggestions:

  • Serve with a side of Moroccan flatbread (such as khobz) for dipping.
  • Enjoy with a glass of Moroccan mint tea for a traditional pairing.

Conclusion: Moroccan Lamb Tagine is a flavorful and comforting dish that brings together tender lamb, aromatic spices, and sweet dried fruits in a rich sauce. This recipe allows you to recreate the exotic flavors of Moroccan cuisine in your own kitchen, perfect for a special dinner or gathering. Enjoy the fragrant aroma and complex flavors of Moroccan Lamb Tagine with this easy-to-follow recipe.

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Written by Robert Zelesky

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