Introducing Chef Mark Sargeant
We are so excited to have the opportunity to share this lamb tagine from the mind of Michelin-starred chef Mark Sargeant. If you aren’t familiar with this British chef, the first thing you should know is that he’s dreamy. Although that may not be particularly important to his resume, it goes a long way when you’re talking about aphrodisiacs. In addition to smoldering his way to becoming one of Britain’s most successful chefs, he is credited with creating some of the country’s most successful restaurants.
This beautiful recipe combines the savory, gamey flavors of lamb with the sweet tang of pomegranate and dried apricots. (Learn more about the aphrodisiac side of both pomegranate and apricots.) It’s a sensual combination of savory and sweet, layered with spice.
Traditionally, this dish would be cooked in a tagine. It’s a cone-shaped, clay cooking vessel used in Moroccan cooking. A tagine has a cone-shaped lid that helps return steam back to the food while it’s cooking. This added moisture helps create a soft, stew-like consistency to the dish. This lamb tagine is adapted for a British or American kitchen and it cooks in a sauté with a tight-fitting lid instead of the traditional vessel.
Lamb Tagine with Pomegranates
- 2 tbsp vegetable oil
- 3 large shallots or 1 medium onion peeled and finely chopped
- 2 tsp ground ginger
- 1/4 tsp ground turmeric
- 1/4 tsp sweet paprika
- salt and freshly milled black pepper
- 1 1/2 lb lean boneless lamb shoulder cut into 1-inch cubes
- 2 garlic cloves peeled and crushed
- pinch saffron threads
- 3/4 pint hot water
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 2 sprigs fresh thyme
- 3-4 dried apricots roughly chopped
- 3 tbsp freshly chopped coriander
- 2 tbsp fresh pomegranate seeds
- Heat the oil in a large sauté pan for which you have a tight-fitting lid. Add the shallots, ginger, turmeric, paprika, salt and pepper. Cook over a low heat for 1-2 minutes.
- Add the meat and garlic, coat in the flavored oil and cook for 4-6 minutes until brown all over.
- Add the saffron and water. Bring to the boil, reduce the heat, cover tightly and simmer for 2 hours.
- minutes before the end of the cooking time, add the cinnamon stick, thyme, apricots and coriander Cover and continue to cook for the remainder of the cooking time.
- Remove the thyme and cinnamon stick from the tagine. Garnish with the pomegranate seeds and serve with steamed couscous or rice.
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