It’s freezer cleaning out time and I found two lamb sirloins in there. When they were defrosted, I started out to make harira which is a soup but halfway through I decided to stop following a recipe and go out on my own and make this Moroccan inspired lamb stew instead. I thought I was in the mood for soup until I began smelling the onion and garlic and cumin and paprika cooking in the pot. When it came time to add the beef stock, I added only half and voilà, it became stew. I could have cooked this in my tagine but by the time I had the pot dirty, I’d had enough washing up to do.
The recipe also didn’t call for any peas but it looked quite sad without them so in they went. This is the point where it went from Moroccan to Moroccan inspired.
I tasted it and there was a slight bitterness so I popped in a teaspoon of brown sugar, then I added some salt and lots of freshly ground pepper. I wasn’t going to blog it but we liked it so much, I decided I’d share it with you.
- 500 grams (about a pound) of lamb steaks cut in cubes
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 large or 2 small onions chopped
- 2 cloves garlic finely chopped
- 1½ teaspoons ground cumin
- 2 teaspoons paprika
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 3 cups beef stock
- 1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- 2 cans chopped tomatoes
- 3 tablespoons chopped fresh coriander (cilantro) leaves, plus extra for garnish
- 2 tablespoons chopped flat leaf parsley
- 1 cup frozen peas
- salt and pepper for seasoning
- serve with boiled rice or flat bread
- ¼ cup sour cream
- In a large, heavy saucepan over medium-low heat, add the oil and when warm add the onion and a pinch of salt.
- After two minutes add the garlic and cook until the onion is translucent.
- Add the lamb and and raise the heat to medium and stir until the meat is browned.
- Sprinkle the cumin and paprika over the meat and onions and cook until fragrant.
- Add the stock and the bay leaf and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and cover.
- Cook for a minimum of 2 hours, stirring occasionally. Mine took 2½ hours for the meat to be really soft.
- Toss in the peas and bring the pot back to the boil then add the coriander and parsley.
- Place rice in a bowl and pour over the stew. Garnish with a few coriander leaves.
Have you ever started to follow a recipe and decided halfway through that you had a better idea?