We love easy food, and slow and easy is even better! Designed for a tagine, this is the sort of dish you can leave blipping away all day in a slow cooker to fill the house with rich, fragrant aromas when you come home. Don’t worry if there’s leftovers – like most stews, this tastes even better reheated a day or two later!
Oh and if you’ve never used gremolata in a stew or casserole before, we beg you to try it. Such a simple addition stirred in at the last minute (literally) just before you serve the dish really lifts the flavours to another level. After all, “once you’ve had gremolata, there’s no going back-ata”…
Ingredients (serves 4)
- 800g large-dice lamb (neck fillets are perfect, but the cheaper shoulder is fine)
- 2 large onions, grated
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed
- 2 x 400g tins of chopped tomatoes
- 100g dried fruits: apricots, dates or whatever you have
- 1 pint chicken stock
- 1 TBSP clear honey
- 2 TBSP rapeseed or sunflower oil
- 2 TBSP natural yoghurt
- 2 tsp Moroccan rub
- Pinch of sea salt
- handful of fresh flat leaf parsley, lemon zest and 1 small clove of garlic, all finely chopped
- In a bowl, mix half the Moroccan rub spice mix with the yoghurt and add the lamb; stir well, cover and leave in fridge for a few hours, overnight if possible
- Heat 1 TBSP oil in a heavy pan, add the grated onion and the remaining Moroccan rub spice mix; cook gently for 8-10 mins until the onions have softened, adding the crushed garlic for the last 3 mins. Take out and reserve for later.
- Add remaining 1 TBSP of oil and turn up the heat: scrape off the yoghurt marinade and brown the lamb in batches – don’t be afraid of getting some real colour, it’s all flavour! Remove with slotted spoon and add a splash of stock (wine if you prefer) to deglaze, working all those sticky bits off the bottom of the the pan with a wooden spoon.
- Put all this, the marinade, the lamb and the onions in the slow cooker. Add the dried fruit, tomatoes, honey, sea salt and stock and cook on the lowest setting all day (if you’re in a hurry or doing it in a tagine or casserole, 2 – 2.5 hours in a casserole dish in a 160c oven should do).
- Check the seasoning, stir in the gremolata and serve.
I normally like to serve this either with rice or couscous – for extra creaminess, I sometimes add a dollop of sour cream on top and serve with warm pitta breads instead. Great for dinner parties as well because the work is all done when your guests arrive, and they are greeted with an amazing aroma that makes them think you’ve been hard at work all day! I normally leave making the gremolata until they arrive so they can see me doing something…!
Oh, and sorry – this is another recipe I got so excited about when it was ready, I forgot to take pictures (I know, I know!) so I will make it again in a few days and add some pictures then. Until then, I thought you might at least like to see the recipe because lots of people bought the rub last week and I promised them a recipe!
Now, I’m off to make a big sign to put in the kitchen saying “TAKE PICTURES!”. Enjoy!