Spicy lamb tagine with couscous

    2 hours 35 min

    Capture the atmosphere of Morocco with this filling stew of lamb, fruit and vegetables, served with fluffy couscous.

    123 people made this

    Serves: 4 

    • 800g (1 lb 12 oz) lean lamb leg steak
    • 125g (4 1/2 oz) onions, chopped
    • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
    • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
    • 5cm (2 in) cinnamon stick, broken in half
    • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
    • 1 teaspoon paprika
    • 10-12 saffron strands
    • salt and black pepper
    • 125g (4 1/2 oz) ready-to-eat dried apricots, quartered
    • 175g (6 oz) carrots, diced
    • 100g (3 1/2 oz) courgettes, diced
    • 350g (12 oz) tomatoes, chopped
    • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh coriander
    • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
    • 300g (10 1/2 oz) couscous
    • To garnish: 1 tablespoon each of chopped fresh coriander and parsley

    Prep:35min  ›  Cook:2hr  ›  Ready in:2hr35min 

    1. Trim any fat off the lamb and cut it into 2.5 cm (1 in) cubes. Put the meat, onions, garlic, cayenne pepper, cinnamon, ginger, paprika and saffron into the bottom of a double boiler or a large saucepan, season to taste and add enough water to cover. Bring the contents to the boil, then cover the pan, reduce the heat to low and simmer for 1 hour 30 minutes.
    2. Add the apricots, carrots, courgettes, tomatoes, coriander and parsley to the pan and cook, covered, for a further 15 minutes.
    3. Meanwhile, put the couscous into a bowl, add just enough cold water to cover it and leave it for 5 minutes to absorb the liquid.
    4. Transfer the couscous to the top of the double boiler, or, if using a saucepan, put it into a sieve, and steam the couscous over the stew for 15 minutes until warm, fluffed up and tender. Add salt to taste.
    5. To serve, spoon the couscous onto a serving dish; lift the lamb and vegetables from the pan with a slotted spoon and lay them on top of the couscous and sprinkle them with chopped coriander and parsley. Pour the broth into a jug or bowl to serve separately and let people help themselves at the table.

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    Reviews in English (8)


    Used different ingredients. Substituted Saffron Strands for Turmeric. Substituted Cinnamon Sticks for Ground Cinnamon. Served on a bed of lettuce with a Naan bread to stretch the meal out to serve 5 Added  -  01 Jan 2011


    We cooked this at school yesterday for a teacher training day and everyone loved it! I can't believe how many people asked me for the recipe...... We cooked 12kg of meat in quantity, used ground cinnamon instead of cinnamon stick and ground turmeric instead of saffron (bit expensive for schools!). We also used stock instead of water to add a bit more flavour. We added some diced sweet potatoes about 30 mins from the end of cooking - this just makes the meat go a bit further! If you don't like cous cous, serve with steamed rice. I would highly recommend this recipe as a perfect dinner party dish.  -  02 Sep 2009


    Left out the courgettes as I didn't have any. Substituted powdered cinnamon for stick. Did it over several hours in a slow cooker. Came out a treat. Froze the left-overs and had it a week or so later. Like curry, freezing seems to make this dish even better!  -  23 Nov 2012