Alan’s Lamb Tagine with apricots, raisins and honey

Just wanted to share this recipe that Alan of Stewed! fame sent my way last week. I’m helping him promote his lush pots of stew, and let me tell you they’re worth shouting about 🙂

The recipe he sent is for a fruity and gently spiced lamb tagine. It’s dead simple to make, wafts gorgeous smells throughout the house and is luxurious to eat. Crucially it’s a meaty one pot supper that is a bloke-pleaser. Perfect Bryson fodder.

I ended up using pretty much every spice in my cupboard which always makes me feel far more gourmet than I actually am!

I served it up with my favourite lemon and garlic couscous from Waitrose. It went down really well with the boys – especially Arlo! So i’ve frozen lots of little portions of the leftovers for quick dinner fixes for the belly that takes quite some filling these days!

So here’s the recipe:

Lamb Tagine with apricots, raisins and honey

(serves 4 – Alan says – I say more like 5 or 6!)

2 tbsp olive oil
2 onions, roughly chopped
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 tsp sweet paprika
2 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp turmeric
1/2 tsp ground allspice
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
Pinch Saffron
2 cinnamon sticks
900g lamb shoulder, trimmed of as much fat as possible and diced into 3-4cm pieces
400g tin tomatoes
1 tbsp honey
1 handful dried raisins (about 30g)
100g dried apricots
25g flaked almonds
300ml water
Freshly ground black pepper
125g cooked chickpeas (tinned are fine) drained and rinsed

Heat the oil in a wide saucepan that has a lid and cook the onions gently for 10-15 minutes until soft and starting to brown. Then add the garlic and all the spices – including the cinnamon sticks – and continue to cook for a couple of minutes to let the spices release all their great flavours.

Next throw in the lamb pieces and cook for 5-8 minutes until all the meat has sealed and the spices have begun to work their way into the flesh. Add the tomatoes, honey, raisins, apricots, almonds and water. Grind over a generous helping of black pepper and a few good pinches of salt and stir everything together. Cover with the lid but allow a little steam to escape. Cook gently on the hob for 1 and a half hours.

Add the chickpeas and continue cooking, still allowing some steam to escape, for another 30 minutes. Test for seasoning and adjust if you think it needs it. The stew should be lovely and thick, so if it’s not quite there yet, remove the lid completely and continue to cook for a little longer.

Serve with bulgur wheat or couscous and sprinkly with chopped parsley.

This recipe is from Alan’s new cookbook 80 Irresistable Stews and One-Pot Wonders available to pre-order on Amazon. It hits the shelves in October 2010.

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About Katie Bryson

Katie Bryson is a freelance food writer and blogger. She left a career in online news at the BBC to immerse herself in the culinary world, taking in courses at Leiths School of Food and Wine and an internship at Waitrose along the way. Her family food blog is bursting with recipes and tips for feeding hungry families that’ll help inspire all those frazzled parents out there wondering what on earth to cook for tea!
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