The northern African country of Morocco is on my bucket-list for travels. Every time I hear about or read a new article about the country my wanderlust grows. And naturally, it is the cuisine that inspires me the most. I’m sure I would love every bite of food there. So until I actually make it there, I must satisfy my Moroccan food cravings out of my own kitchen. With the right ingredients, however, this is quite easy to do.
This easy hands-off recipe, adapted from an old Cooking Light Magazine, brings together some of my favorite flavors of all time. The earthy flavors of cumin, coriander, and saffron contrast with the sweetness of the apricots and dates in this Moroccan inspired lamb dish. You can easily adjust the amount of seasonings to suit your taste buds. Serve the lamb over a bed of couscous to complete the Moroccan theme.
LAMB w/ DATES & APRICOTS
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 pound boneless leg of lamb, cubed
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 large yellow onion, chopped
1/3 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
8 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon saffron threads, crushed
1 1/2 cups beef broth
1 1/2 cups sliced carrots
1/2 cup dried apricots, sliced
1/2 cup pitted dates, halved
2 tablespoons chopped mint
2 cups cooked couscous (for serving)
- Heat the oil in a large skillet set over medium-high heat. Add the lamb and sprinkle with the salt and pepper. Saute for 8 minutes or until it is browned on all sides. Remove from the pan.
- Add the onion, orange juice, and garlic to the pan; cook until the liquid has evaporated, scraping the bottom of the pan to loosen any browned bits.
- Stir in the cumin, coriander, and saffron and cook for 15 seconds.
- Return the lamb to the pan and add the broth and bring the mixture to a boil.
- Cover, reduce the heat, and simmer for 30 minutes.
- Stir in the carrots, apricots, and dates and cook for an additional 18 minutes or until the carrots are tender.
- Remove from the heat, stir in the mint and adjust the seasonings.
- Serve over the couscous.