My new flatmate, the lovely Neil, moved in on Wednesday, and so I cooked us dinner. I decided to go for this recipe from the book The Beer and Food Companion that Alberto got me for my birthday. The recipe contains pale ale and also recommended a beer to go with it, although we opted for wine instead. I love a bit of Moroccan cooking and I’ve cooked, and blogged loads of different tagines, but none of the others have had ale in them, so I thought it was worth giving it a try. And a lamb tagine is always welcome. I left out the flaked almonds as I don’t like them, other than that I followed the recipe, simply scaling it down from feeding 6 to 2.
I served it with a fluffy, buttery cous-cous.
1.6kg of boneless lamb shoulder, cut into bite-sized chunks
1 large onion, finely sliced
2 cloves of garlic, crushed
500ml of tomato juice
1 x 400 tin of chopped tomatoes
120g of dried apricots (I cut each in half)
10 stoned dates, chopped
2 tablespoons of sultanas
40g of flaked almonds
600ml of pale ale
1 teaspoon of saffron threads
1 teaspoon of ground black pepper
1½ tablespoons of sweet paprika
1 teaspoon of ground cumin
1 teaspoon of ground coriander
1½ tablespoons of ground ginger
1 tablespoon of turmeric
2 tablespoons of ground cinnamon
2 tablespoons of fresh parsley, chopped
Combine the pepper, paprika, cumin, coriander, ginger, turmeric and cinnamon in a bowl. Use half the mixture to coat them lamb, then cover and leave to marinate in the fridge for as long as possible, preferably overnight.
Pre-heat the oven to 150.
In a large saucepan heat one tablespoon of olive oil over a medium heat, and add the onion and cook until softened and slightly golden.
In a separate frying pan heat 2 more tablespoons of oil and cook the lamb pieces, browning on all sides. Once browned remove from the heat.
Add the remaing spice mix to the onions and cook for 1 minute, until fragrant. Add the garlic and cook for about 30 seconds more.
Add the lamb to the onions and mix well. Add 250ml of the tomato juice to the pan that you cooked the lamb in and bring to a simmer, scraping up any stuck pieces of lamb. Add this tomato juice to the lamb and onions in the pan.
Add the remaining tomato juice, chopped tomatoes, apricots, dates, sultanas, almond flakes, saffron and beer.
Bring to a simmer, then transfer to a tagine, pop the lid on and bake in the oven for 2 – 2½ hours.
Sprinkle with chopped parsley before serving.