Lamb with Apricot and Pine Nut Couscous

    20 min

    Hot chilli, aromatic cumin and lemon-flavoured pan-fried lamb accompany a light and fluffy couscous in this super-fast dish. It's perfect served with steamed whole green beans or small courgettes. Delicious!

    2 people made this

    Serves: 4 

    • 200g couscous
    • 50g ready-to-eat dried apricots, chopped
    • 550ml boiling stock, made with stock cubes
    • 2 tbsp olive oil
    • 400g lamb stir-fry strips or leg steaks, thinly sliced
    • 2 large garlic cloves, crushed
    • 1 large fresh red chilli, seeded and thinly sliced
    • 1 tsp ground cumin
    • 1 tsp paprika, plus extra for dusting
    • juice of 1 lemon
    • 4 tbsp half-fat crème fraîche
    • 4 tbsp toasted pine nuts, plus extra to serve
    • 2 tbsp chopped fresh coriander

    Prep:10min  ›  Cook:10min  ›  Ready in:20min 

    1. Put the couscous and apricots into a heatproof bowl and mix in 400ml stock, 1 tbsp oil and 1 tsp salt. Set aside so that the liquid can be absorbed while you prepare the lamb.
    2. When the grains have been soaking for 10 minutes, heat the remaining oil in a large nonstick frying pan and stir-fry the lamb strips with the garlic, chilli, cumin and paprika for about 7 minutes or until nicely browned and just tender. Add the remaining stock and bring to the boil, stirring to loosen the residue on the base of the pan. Season and squeeze over the lemon juice, then mix in the crème fraîche.
    3. Fork through the couscous quite briskly to separate the grains. Mix in the pine nuts and coriander, then divide among four plates. Top with the creamy lamb and garnish with more pine nuts and a light dusting of paprika.

    …get ahead

    You can soak a 500g pack of couscous using 800ml boiling water or stock, and chill or freeze half the quantity. Frozen couscous must be eaten within three months. Reheat the couscous in the microwave for 4-5 minutes on High until light and fluffy, forking through the grains once.

    …more ideas

    Curried vegetables and couscous This is a great way to use up leftover vegetables and meat from a roast dinner. Cut all the lean meat from a cooked joint into small dice. Cut any leftover vegetables (roast potatoes, carrots, parsnips) into small chunks (allow about 100g per person). Soak the couscous and apricots as step 1. Heat a wok with 1 tbsp olive oil and add the meat with 1 crushed garlic clove, a 2cm piece fresh root ginger, peeled and grated and 1 large red chilli, seeded and chopped. Sprinkle in 1 tbsp mild curry powder or curry paste. Stir-fry for 2-3 minutes, then toss in the vegetables and cook until hot. Season, then mix into the couscous. * Moroccan couscous Soak the couscous as step 1 but omit the apricots. Meanwhile, cook 1 sliced onion in 2 tbsp olive oil with 2 crushed garlic cloves and a 2cm piece fresh root ginger, peeled and grated, for 5 minutes. Mix in 2 tsp harissa paste, or to taste. Season, then add 2 x 400g cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed. Add a 280g jar of roasted red peppers or marinated aubergines. Stir lightly and cook for 3 minutes. Mix into the couscous.

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    We had this for dinner tonight and it was gorgeous. Both hubby and son thoroughly enjoyed it. It was very tasty and full of flavour. I added chickpeas and omitted the creme freche but otherwise kept it the same. We will be having this again thank you  -  04 Nov 2014