The first time I had Moroccan food was during a very stressful time in my life, when my world had been turned upside down. I was literally shaking from anxiety and I was often close to tears. Mr Everything was just a friend then and doing his best to distract me from my worries.
He took me to Marrakesh in Portland. Giant, beautifully carved, wooden doors lead to what looks like a sheiks tent with fabric and tapestries on the walls and ceiling. Moroccan and Arabic music play in the background and the tables are ornate and low to the ground. For the best experience you eat with your hands. Marrakesh serves a 5 course meal, and even though I can't have everything (the bastilla course, and any of the entrée with couscous are not gluten free) I loved everything I ate.
I stopped shaking and began to relax. The distraction was working and I felt a million miles away from my problems. I remember that meal so well and immersed myself in all the smells and flavors.
This Moroccan Lamb with apricots and honey was my entrée that night and the flavors have stuck with me. It's what inspired me to make Ras El Hanout at home and to make my version of Moroccan Lentil soup.
Bottom line you should try Moroccan food....
I still stalk the shelves at Powell's Books for Moroccan cookbooks to add to my collection. The first one I bought has a good array of recipes and it had newspaper clippings of other Moroccan recipes tucked inside its pages. It didn't have the exact recipe I was hoping for so I had to play around a bit between two or three recipes to create this recipe.
The first time I made this my kitchen filled with the smells I remembered from Marrakesh. It always amazes me how smell can evoke such strong emotions and memories.
The meat is so tender and it has tang and sweetness and a little hint of spicy kick. The recipe is dairy free, gluten free, and paleo friendly. I serve mine with rice but you could serve it with cauliflower rice or other veggies.
If you're wanting a touch of the exotic and want a satisfying meal give this recipe a try. I put on some Moroccan music as it cooks to set the mood and create a relaxing atmosphere.Print
Moroccan spiced Lamb with apricots and honey
Sweet and savory come together in this intoxicating dish. Lamb is cooked with Moroccan spices until tender and then smothered with apricots and honey to create an unbelievable sweet and tangy sauce.
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 2 hours 20 minutes
- Total Time: 2 hours 30 minutes
- Yield: 6
- Category: Main Course
- Cuisine: Moroccan
- 3 lbs Lamb pieces
- 2 tsp Salt
- 1 cup Water
- 1 pinch Saffron threads
- 2 tsp Ras el Hanout
- 2 Yellow Onions (Diced)
- 2 TBS Coconut oil
- 1 1/2 cups Dried Apricots
- 2 cups Hot water
- 1/2 cup Honey
- 2 tsp roasted sesame seeds
- Place the lamb in a large dutch oven and sprinkle with salt.
- In a large measuring cup combine the 1 cup of water, saffron, and ras el hanout. Pour half of this mixture over the lamb. Reserve the other half for later.
- Place the onions and oil on top of the lamb and cover with water. Turn the burner to low and cook for 2 hours.
- Meanwhile place apricots in a bowl and cover with hot water. Let this soak for 2 hours.
- After two hours drain the apricots and add them to the lamb along with the reserved liquid. Cook this for another 20 minutes then add the honey and cook until caramelized and has created a sauce.
- Sprinkle with roasted sesame seeds before serving.
- Calories: 674
Keywords: Gluten free, Lamb