I’ve been making this stew most of the winter, actually. I’m only calling it spring lamb now because it is spring. But it’s been a cold spring, at least for those of us in the northern half of the country.
A recipe from Bon Appetit inspired this, though a woman from Algeria I worked with who would bring couscous to share inspired me more. I keep the spices warm rather than hot and like to add carrots for sweetness and color.
Serve the stew over couscous (Near East brand has a really nice whole-grain one now). The kids really like the lamb with packaged Naan warmed in the oven.
Spring Lamb (vaguely) Moroccan Style
1 tbsp. ground cumin
2 tsp. ground coriander
1 tsp. salt
¼ tsp. cayenne pepper
A few grinds of black pepper
1-1/2 pounds trimmed and cubed boneless leg of lamb
1 large onlon, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tbsp. minced fresh ginger
4-5 medium carrots, cut into chunks
1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
1 can diced tomatoes, drained
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
6-8 dried apricots, diced
2 tsp. grated lemon peel
1 can garbanzo beans (chickpeas), drained and rinsed
Mix spices in bowl. Toss lamb in spices, then, in heavy pot, brown on all sides in olive oil over medium high (do this in more than one batch to avoid overcrowding). Remove browned lamb to bowl.
Add onion to drippings and cook over medium-low to medium heat until softened and beginning to caramelize. Add garlic, ginger, and carrots and cook for a few minutes. Add broth, tomatoes, cinnamon, apricots, and lemon peel. Bring to boil, scraping browned bits. Add meat back to pot and cook for one to one and a half hours. Uncover, and simmer to thicken a bit. Add garbanzo beans to pot about ten minutes before serving.