Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Tunisian Lamb Tagine

Yesterday was a little cooler than normal, so I decided to get the slow cooker heated up for a good stew. This recipe is courtesy of a book called “Art of the Slow Cooker” by Andrew Schloss. Many of the recipes can be modified to paleo by changing some of the ingredients. The only change I made to the lamb recipe was to eliminate the couscous. (Mashed cauliflower to the rescue, again!)

The stew has a Moroccan flavor and smells wonderful. It’s easy to make and can be cooked at low or high temperature depending upon how much time you have to prepare it.

Read through all the directions before beginning. 

2 pounds lamb, cut into large cubes
Sea salt and pepper
4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
5 parsnips or carrots, peeled and cut into chunks
2 large sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks
2 pieces celery, sliced into 1” pieces
2 onions, cut into 1” pieces
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 tablespoon ground coriander
½ teaspoon ground allspice
1 ½ cups beef broth
1 15 oz. can diced tomatoes, with the juice
1 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
1 cinnamon stick, or ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 dried red chile pepper
¼ cup ground almonds, toasted lightly in a pan
Zest of ½ lemon
Juice of ½ lemon
Flat-leaf parsley and/or cilantro

Season the lamb with salt and pepper. Brown the lamb 3-5 minutes per side in a hot skillet in 2 tablespoons of the olive oil. Transfer to slow cooker.

Add another tablespoon olive oil to the skillet. Add the parsnips (or carrots), sweet potatoes, celery, and onions and sauté until lightly browned but just barely tender, about 4 minutes. Stir in the garlic, cumin, coriander, and allspice. Stir to coat, about 1 minute. Transfer to the slow cooker.

Add the beef broth to the skillet and heat to boiling, scraping up any browned bits. Pour into cooker.

Add the tomatoes and stir to combine. Add the black pepper, cinnamon stick (or cinnamon), and chile pepper. Cover and cook for 3 to 4 hours on high, or 6 to 8 hours on low. (Check after several hours to make sure that the vegetables do not overcook.)

While the stew is cooking, mix the almonds, lemon juice, and lemon zest in a small bowl.

When the stew is done, remove the cinnamon stick and the chile pepper and discard. Add the almond mixture to the cooker and turn to high for about 15 minutes. The mixture will thicken.

Serve alone or with mashed cauliflower as a base. Top with chopped parsley and cilantro.

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