Lamb tagine with preserved artichokes, lemon and green olives

Neil Perry
Lamb tagine with preserved artichokes, lemon and green olives
Lamb tagine with preserved artichokes, lemon and green olives Photo: William Meppem
Difficulty
Easy

This braise relies on the wonderful flavours of the spices, lamb and lemon melding together along with the artichokes and salty olives. Serve with cous cous, rice or small orzo. For really fluffy cous cous, follow the instructions on a pack of instant cous cous, then steam it (in a steamer lined with muslin) for an extra 20 minutes. This trick makes all the difference.

Ingredients

1kg boneless lamb shoulder, cut into 2cm dice

pinch of saffron

2 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed

1 tsp sea salt

1 tsp ground ginger

½ tsp turmeric

1 tsp mild chilli flakes

1 small red onion, grated

4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil, plus extra for cooking and serving

4 tbsp flat-leaf parsley leaves, chopped

2 lemons, juiced

8 small preserved artichokes in olive oil, halved

12 large green olives

1 preserved lemon, pith removed and julienned

Method

Place the saffron in 2 tablespoons of boiling water and allow to infuse for 10 minutes.

Crush the garlic with the sea salt. Add the saffron water, ginger, turmeric, chilli, grated onion and oil. Add the lamb, toss to coat and refrigerate for 2 hours.

Place a 30cm tagine or heavy-based pan over a medium-low heat. Add a drizzle of olive oil and slowly cook the meat for about 15 minutes to get some colour, turning the pieces as they cook.

Add 200ml hot water and the parsley, bring to the boil and reduce to a very low simmer; cook, covered, for 2 hours, occasionally turning over the meat in the sauce.

Add the lemon juice to the sauce and simmer gently, uncovered, and allow the sauce to reduce by one third.

Fold in the artichokes and olives and warm through. Sprinkle the preserved lemon over the top and drizzle with extra virgin olive oil.

Serve in the tagine or spoon from a pan onto a presentation plate.