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Pomegranate & Date Lamb Tagine, 2 Thumbs Up!

Friday, 5 March 2010

This recipe has been on my to-cook list for like forever. I had all the ingredients ready since months ago except for the pomegranate fruit, well..and the meat. Dealing with the fruit is a PITA. You have to open the fruit, slowly scrape off the seeds bit by bit, carefully remove the disgustingly bitter white bits (the hardest part) and the juice just keeps splashing at you. That's why I stick to berries, grapes, apples, you get the point.

I totally forgot about this dish until the wild boar asked me what I was going to do with the jar of preserved lemons that I bought months ago. It's actually a bad habit of mine, I tend to buy stuff and forget about it. Anyway, I felt bad and thought it's about time to end the procrastination. Glad I did. It's so good! It's very spicy, rich and flavourful. Love the balance of flavours in this dish. The dates contributed sweetness and the pomegranate added a nice tartness to the dish.  And then the fresh herbs sort of "freshened up" the flavours of the dish. I served it with a simple herb flavoured couscous. I also added toasted pine nuts to the couscous, which added a nice nutty flavour to the whole dish.

Pomegranate and date lamb tagine 5
Ingredients:
Adapted from Closet Cooking
  • 900g lamb - cut into chunks (I used leg of lamb)
  • 3 medium onions - sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic - pressed
  • 2 tbs ginger - grated
  • 1 tbs harissa
  • 2 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1 tsp cinnnamon powder
  • 1 pinch saffron
  • 2 1/2 cups pomegranate juice
  • 2 small preserved lemons - quartered
  • 3/4 cup dates
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • A handful fresh mint - coarsely chopped
  • A handful fresh parsley - coarsely chopped
  • Pomegranate seeds  (for garnish)
Pomegranate and date lamb tagine 2
Small preserved lemons

Directions:
  • Heat up a bit of oil in a pan.
  • Add lamb and brown all sides. Leave aside for later use.
  • Heat up a bit of oil in a pressure cooker pot/ regular pot.
  • Add onions, saute until softened.
  • Add browned lamb, garlic, ginger, harissa, the spices and saffron. Stir to mix. Fry until fragrant.
Pomegranate and date lamb tagine 1
  • Pour in pomegranate juice, preserved lemons and dates.
Pomegranate and date lamb tagine 3
  • Cover and leave to cook under pressure for 30 mins.
  • Remove cover, leave to simmer until sauce is reduced (about 30 mins).
  • Season with salt and pepper.
  • Toss in mint and parsley
  • Serve with some herb & pine nut couscous! (couscous, mint, parsley, toasted pine nuts, seasoned with Knorr chicken stock cube.)
Pomegranate and date lamb tagine 4

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