Moroccan Lamb Tagine

After cooking mostly the same recipes for the past month, I decided it was time to get in the kitchen and whip up something new.  I was so pleased with how this tagine turned out.  The lamb was “melt in your mouth” tender and the spices were pleasantly warm.  The overall dish was slightly sweet, so I think I may leave out the honey next time around. 
Moroccan Lamb Tagine
Adapted from Closet Cooking
Marinade Ingredients

  • 2 teaspoons paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 pinch saffron
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 1 pound lamb (cut into 1 inch cubes)

Cooking Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 4 cups chicken stock
  • 2 carrots (cut into slim rounds)
  • 1/2 cup dried apricots (chopped)
  • 1/2 cup dried dates (chopped)
  • 1/2 cup dried figs (chopped)
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 tablespoon cilantro (chopped)
  • 1 tablespoon parsley (chopped)
  • 1 tablespoon toasted almond slices

Instructions:

  1. Combine paprika, turmeric, cumin, cayenne pepper, cinnamon, cloves, cardamom, salt, ginger, coriander, saffron, lemon zest and oil in a bowl.
  2. Add the lamb, mix well and place in a vacuum seal or zip lock bag. Marinate the fridge for a few hours or overnight.
  3. Heat the oil in a tagine or a Dutch oven.
  4. Add the lamb, brown well on all sides and set aside.
  5. Add tomato paste and cover with 4 cups stock.
  6. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer covered until the lamb is fall apart tender, about 2 hours.
  7. Add the carrots, apricots, dates, and figs.
  8. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer until the carrots are tender, about 20 minutes.
  9. Stir in the honey.
  10. Serve garnished with cilantro, parsley and toasted almonds.

Improvised Lamb Sirloin Roast

I made a journey to Whole Foods late last week in hopes of picking up some fresh bison steaks for our beach vacation.  I learned from the butcher that bison shouldn’t be kept more than 2 days without freezing.  So, I picked up a lamb sirloin roast instead.  The kitchen at Shenanigans is pretty minimalist, so I had to make up the technique as I went along.  All in all, the lamb turned out beautifully.

Lamb with Balsamic Sauce
1 lamb sirloin roast
1 cup balsamic
fresh herbs- I used oregano & rosemary
1 tsp sugar
salt and pepper

Simmer balsamic and sugar over medium heat until reduced by half, stir in herbs, salt, and pepper.

Heat 2 tbsp oil in a medium skillet until just smoking.  Sear lamb on all sides, about 2 minutes each side.  Transfer to a baking dish and cover with sauce.  Bake at 400 for about 40 minutes. 

Slice and serve topped with additional sauce.

Lamb Sliders

For Christmas, Forrest received a Big City Slider Maker.  I was skeptical, to say the least, but I tried it out tonight to make dinner.  Thanks to a fantastic deal at the grocery store, I was able to try out lamb sliders tonight.  I found some slider buns on sale in the fresh bakery section as well!  I didn’t follow any recipes, just made it up as I went along.

Lamb Sliders

1 pound ground lamb
1 tbsp evoo
fresh herbs such as rosemary and parsley, minced
freshly ground pepper
kosher salt
burger toppings of choice

The slider maker was easy enough to use….
Using the provided scoop, shape the sliders and drop into the lightly greased pan.  Place on stovetop on medium heat, cover with top lid, and cook 5 mins or until cooked through.  I personally chose to dump out the juices as the sliders were cooking, which seemed to reduce the “boiling” factor.  The bottoms of the sliders were nicely browned, but the tops were not.  I simply covered the sliders with cheese and broiled them for a few seconds to melt the cheese.

We enjoyed this yummy treat with roasted “chips” of carrots and potatoes topped with evoo, kosher salt, freshly ground pepper, rosemary, and parsley.

Gnocchi with Venison/Lamb Bolognese

For Christmas, I received a meat grinder attachment for the KitchenAid Mixer and a Gnocchi rolling pin. And it just so happens, I have a freezer full of venison and some leftover lamb. So, I ground them up and with a lot of patience and Forrest’s help made a yummy dinner! I made up the Bolognese as I went along, so the measurements aren’t exact….

2 tbsp evoo
1 cup carrots, sliced using Cuisinart food processor
1 lb ground venison and lamb
2 cloves minced garlic
2 cans diced tomatoes, drained
6 oz. tomato paste
1 cup basil
1 tsp oregano
2 bay leaves
1 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp freshly ground nutmeg
1 tsp kosher salt
1 cup dry red wine

Heat oil in dutch oven over medium heat. Add carrots, meat, and garlic and sauté until lightly browned. Meanwhile, crush basil and tomatoes (I also used the grinder attachment for this). Add remaining ingredients to meat mixture and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer at least 1 hour. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Gnocchi
adapted from Williams Sonoma Pasta

3 lbs russet potatoes, peeled and diced
2 large eggs
1 tsp kosher salt
2-3 cups all purpose flour

Boil potatoes until tender. Drain and cool potatoes. Rice the potatoes using either a ricer, food mill, or mashing thoroughly. Allow potatoes to cool completely (this is VERY important! It allows the excess moisture to evaporate, so that the potatoes are as dry as possible).

Break the eggs into a bowl, add salt, and beat lightly. Drizzle egg mixture over cooled potatoes. Sprinkle 1 cup of flour over potatoes. Using a bench scraper, fold the flour and egg into the potatoes until a dough forms. Sprinkle 1/4 cup flour over work surface and continue folding in flour until the dough reaches consistency. Roll the dough into a 1 inch log and cut into 1/2 inch pieces.

Drop the dough once piece at a time into boiling water. Allow to boil until gnocchi rises to the surface, about 3 minutes. Serve immediately.

** Freeze any extra dough in gnocchi shape on sheet pans.

Lamb Curry


Lamb Curry
Ingredients
  • 1 lb. boneless lamb, such as sirloin or tenderloin, cut into 1 inch cubes
  • salt and fresh ground pepper
  • 1/4 cup evoo
  • 1/2 tsp tumeric
  • 1 cinnamon stick (2 1/2 inches long)
  • 1/2 tsp whole cardamom
  • 1/2 tsp whole cumin seeds
  • 1/2 tsp whole coriander seeds
  • 3 cloves
  • 1/2 tsp ground cayanne pepper
  • 2 tbsp minced peeled fresh ginger
  • 1 tbsp minced garlic
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 15 oz can diced tomatoes, with juice
  • 1 lb. golden potatoes, cut into 1/2 inch dice
  • 1 cup peas
Instructions
  1. Season the lamb with salt and pepper. Heat oil in a heavy, large pot over medium high heat. Brown lamb on all sides. Remove lamb from pot and set aside.
  2. Grind the whole spices until fine. Reduce heat to medium low and add the tumeric and the spice mixture and 1 tsp salt to the pot. Add the minced ginger and garlic and cook, stirring constantly until fragrant.
  3. Return the lamb to the pot. Add 2 cups broth and the tomatoes with their juice, increase heat to medium high and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low, cover and let simmer for 30 mins.
  4. Add the potatoes and cook covered an additional 20 mins. Add the peas and cook about 5 mins.
  5. Serve over couscous.