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Lamb couscous with vegetables

     

This recipe is from the book Moroccan Modern by Hassan M'Souli.

Ingredients

8 lamb forequarter (or neck) chops
1 cup Charmoula Marinade
750g couscous
salt, to taste
1/2 teaspoon saffron threads
1 brown onion - halved and finely sliced
3 ripe tomatoes (chopped)
3 carrots - cut lengthways into quarters
4 zucchini (courgettes), cut lengthways into quarters
3 parsnips, cut lengthways into quarters
1/2 butternut pumpkin (butternut squash) - cut into cubes
2 tablespoons olive oil
Harissa to serve

Charmoula Marinade
1 tablespoon dried crushed chilli
1 tablespoon sweet paprika
1 teaspoon chopped fresh ginger
1/2 teaspoon saffron threads
2 onions, diced
2 bay leaves
1 tablespoon ground cumin
2 garlic cloves, chopped
2 tablespoons chopped flat leaf parsley
2 tablespoon chopped coriander
1/2 Moroccan preserved lemon
1/2 cup (125ml/4 floz) olive oil
Juice of 1/2 lemon

Note - this recipe uses Australian tablespoons which are 20ml

Method

To make the marinade, mix all the ingredients together and leave for half an hour prior to use. It can be stored in the fridge for up to 7 days.

Marinade the lamb in the marinade for at least 4 hours, or overnight if possible.

Place the couscous in a bowl and cover with water. Add salt and saffron threads and soak for 10 minutes.

Lightly fry the marinated lamb to seal and brown slightly. Place it into the bottom of a couscoussier and cover with water and gently bring to the boil. Place the next level of steamer (a fine holed tray for the couscous) over the boiling lamb. Drain the couscous and place evenly into the second level of steamer. Steam uncovered for about 15 minutes, or until steam begins to come out through the couscous.

Add the onion, tomatoes and carrots (plus extra water if required) to the lamb and boil for 10 minutes until carrots are partly cooked. Add the zucchini, parsnips and pumpkin.

While this is cooking, remove the couscous from the steamer and place into a bowl. Work the grain well with your fingers to separate. Add the oil (to seal the grain) and 1 cup (250ml/8floz) of cold water. Return to the steamer and cook again until the steam begins to come through the couscous. These extra preparations may seem a little laborious but ensures that the couscous is fluffy, juicy and correctly cooked.

To serve, place couscous around the outside of a heated serving platter. Place the lamb pieces in the centre and decorate the outside with vegetables. Garnish with the extra boullion from the lamb and vegetables. Extra boullion can also be further seasoned with spices and harissa and served separately for those who like a little more spice.

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