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Moroccan Lamb Tagine with Dates & Almonds

This slowly cooked Moroccan influenced lamb tagine gets a sweet edge from dates and honey and texture from deliciously nutty almonds.

Portrait image of a rich Moroccan Lamb tagine with almonds in a date sauce served on buttered couscous

Morrocan Lamb Stew.

Let’s face it a tagine is a stew, a stew named after the pot it is cooked in.

Things have gone round in a big circle and often times tagine now just refers to a North African or Middle Eastern stew.

All cooking tends to be a “riff” on common flavour combinations, and this dish is no different.

It picks up on the idea of using dates from my sweet potato tagine and then lifts the idea of using blanched almonds from my duck tagine.

It is sweet and sour, rich and thick and packed with big flavours that perfectly compliment the lamb.

Portrait overhead image of a rich Moroccan Lamb stew with almonds in a date sauce served on buttered couscous

Choosing the Lamb.

The ingredients in this recipe should be pretty familiar to most.

The one area where you need to pay attention is the cut of the meat that you use.

This is because you want something with a decent amount of fat for this recipe.

Using a leaner cut of meat will have a knock-on impact on both the texture of the meat and the sauce. So stick with shoulder or leg at a push but avoid anything else.

For me, that means lamb shoulder and I use it in everything from my lamb madras through to my lamb burgers.

It has around 20% fat and it is arguably the cut of lamb with most flavour.

Portrait close up image of a rich Moroccan Lamb stew with almonds in a date sauce served on buttered couscous

Serving Suggestions.

First of all, I will kick off here by mentioning Zaatar, I recommend serving this on the side of this dish. But I also add a tablespoon and stir through just before serving.

I use zaatar a lot in everything from my zaatar halloumi recipe through to my lamb kofta.

It is a spice blend featuring sumac, oregano, thyme and sesame seeds among others. It is super easy to make it at home, here is a zaatar recipe to get you started.

As for sides there are two that really stand out for me.

A simple buttered couscous or bulgur wheat, this is because both of these sides are great at carrying flavour.

They are neutral enough but add a wonderful texture to the meal!

Likewise, you could serve this with toasted millet and it would work perfectly.

Square image of a rich Moroccan Lamb tagine with almonds in a date sauce served on buttered couscous
Yield: 2 Servings

Moroccan Lamb Tagine Recipe

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 55 minutes
Total Time: 2 hours

This deliciously rich and indulgent Moroccan lamb tagine is sweetly spiced and features dates and almonds.

Ingredients

  • 350 g (10.5 oz) Lamb
  • 150 g (5.25 oz) Onion
  • 2 Tbsp Cooking Oil
  • 1 Cinnamon Stick
  • 1 Tsp Ground Turmeric
  • 1 Tsp Ground Cumin
  • 1 Tsp Ground Coriander
  • 1/2 Tsp Black pepper
  • 50 g (1.75 oz) Blanched Almonds
  • 125 g (4.5 oz) Pitted Dates
  • 1 Tsp Honey
  • 2 Tbsp Lemon Juice
  • Zaatar to serve

Instructions

  1. Peel the onions, cut them in half and slice them into 1cm thick half-moon shapes.
  2. Heat the oil in a heavy based pan over a medium heat.
  3. Add the onions and cinnamon stick, then cook until golden brown, approximately 10 minutes.
  4. Cut the lamb into 1.5-2cm cubes.
  5. When the onions have had 10 minutes add the cumin, turmeric, coriander and black pepper.
  6. Add the lamb and then stir to coat all of the ingredients with the spices.
  7. Pour in enough water to cover the bottom of the pan 1cm deep.
  8. Season with salt to taste and bring to a boil.
  9. Reduce the heat to low, add a lid and cook for 75 minutes.
  10. Roughly chop the pitted dates.
  11. Remove the lid and stir in the honey, dates, almonds and lemon juice.
  12. Return the lid and cook for a final 30 minutes.
  13. If you want a thicker sauce then remove the lid and boil hard for 5-10 minutes to reduce the sauce.
  14. Serve with zaatar on the side to allow the diners to season their own dish!

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

2

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 1037Total Fat: 65gSaturated Fat: 18gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 43gCholesterol: 170mgSodium: 348mgCarbohydrates: 68gFiber: 11gSugar: 49gProtein: 52g

Calorific details are provided by a third-party application and are to be used as indicative figures only.

Did you make this recipe?

If you made this recipe, I'd love to see what you did and what I can do better, share a picture with me on Instagram and tag me @krumplibrian and tell me how it went!

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