This simple tagine recipe for the classic Moroccan lamb dish is so straightforward that one is virtually guaranteed a perfect result every time. Indeed, the hardest part of this whole recipe is probably getting all the ingredients together!
There are just six simple steps to tagine heaven!
1 tsp cayenne pepper, 2 tsp ground black pepper, 1½ tbsp paprika, 1½ tbsp. ground ginger, 1 tbsp turmeric, 2 tsp ground cinnamon, 1 x shoulder of lamb, trimmed and cut into 5cm/2in chunks (about 1.1kg/2½lb meat in total), 2 large grated onions, 2 tbsp olive oil, 2 tbsp argan oil, 3 crushed garlic cloves, 570ml/1 pint tomato juice, 2 400g tinned chopped tomatoes, 115g/4oz dried apricots cut in half, 55g/2oz dates cut in half, 55g/2oz sultanas or raisins, 85g/3oz flaked almonds, 1 tsp saffron stamens soaked in cold water, 600ml/1 pint stock (preferably lamb), 1 tbsp clear honey, 2 tbsp coriander (roughly chopped), 2 tbsp flat leaf parsley (roughly chopped).
1. Preheat the oven to 150C/300F/Gas2.
2. Place the cayenne, black pepper, paprika, ginger, turmeric and cinnamon into a small bowl and mix to combine. Place the lamb in a large bowl and toss together with half of the spice mix. Cover and leave overnight in the fridge.
3. Heat 1 tbsp olive oil and 1 tbsp of argan oil in a large casserole dish. Add the grated onion and the remaining spice mix and cook over a gentle heat for 10 minutes so that the onions are soft but not coloured. Add the crushed garlic for the final 3 minutes.
4. In a separate frying pan, heat the remaining oil and brown the cubes of lamb on all sides then add the browned meat to the casserole dish. De-glaze the frying pan with ¼ pint of tomato juice and add these juices to the pan.
5. Add the remaining tomato juice, chopped tomatoes, apricots, dates, raisins or sultanas, flaked almonds, saffron, lamb stock and honey to the casserole dish. Bring to the boil, cover with a fitted lid, place in the oven and cook for 2-2½ hours or until the meat is meltingly tender.
6. Place the lamb in a tagine or large serving dish and sprinkle over the chopped herbs. Serve
For an authentic taste of Marrakech, this traditional Moroccan lamb tagine recipe is hard to beat. The fact that the dish is so easy to produce guarantees the desired result. Enjoy!
If you want to learn more about moroccan cuisine, Les Borjs de la Kasbah offers authentic Moroccan cookery courses within the luxury Marrakech hotel.