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Tunisian Lamb Couscous


(for 4)

900g (2 lbs.) Shoulder or Leg of Lamb
(weighed of the bone)

Spice Mixture
1 Tablespoon Cardomum Pods
2 Teaspoon Cumin Seeds
2 Teaspoon Whole Coriander
1 Teaspoon Ground Paprika
4 fat cloves garlic
Juice 1 Lemon
1 Tablespoons Vinegar
1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
Salt and Black Pepper.

Couscous
350g (12 oz.) Couscous
30 g (1 oz.) Butter
350ml (12 fl oz. Water)
60g (2 oz.) Slivered Almonds
60g (2oz.) Sultanas
60g (2oz.) Dried Apricots
225g (8 oz.) Shallots
2 Scallions.

To Serve
1 Tub Greek Yoghurt

First make the Spice marinade.

You can buy ground spices for this but they donít have the same flavour of the whole ones.
If you buy ground you can skip the next bit.
Put the Cardomum pods into a Mortar ( large sturdy bowl) and bash with a pestle (a rolling pin) until the husks of the pods are broken, releasing the little black seeds inside.
Discard the husks and then grind all the spices together either in a mortar or a food processor.
When these are a coarse powder add in the crushed cloves of garlic, the lemon juice, the oil vinegar and salt and pepper.
Cut the lamb into cubes (discard as much fat as you want, it does add to the flavour)
Rub the spice marinade well into the lamb and leave these to marinade for a couple of hours.

After that time drain the lamb off the marinade (but keep this) and fry the lamb off in hot oil , in small batches, until the pieces are brown and crusty.
Put these into a pot.
Add a cup of water to the remaining marinade and add this to the lamb. Bring to the boil and simmer gently together until the lamb is very tender, this will take about two hours.

Get ready the garnishes for the couscous.
Peel and slice the shallots and fry them gently in a little oil until soft. Increase the heat and continue frying briskly until the shallots are caramelized. Drain on some kitchen paper.
Put the sultanas in a little pot with a little water and simmer until fat and soft. Drain.
Chop the Apricots and the Shallots finely.

Put the 350g Couscous into a bowl and bring the 350 ml of water to the boil.
Pour the water over the couscous and leave this to swell for about 15 mts.
Then stir in the butter and reheat in a microwave or an oven.
Stir in the sultanas, the scallions and sprinkle the shallots over the top.

Put the bowl of Couscous on the table and the Spiced lamb and serve a bowl of yoghurt to dribble over the lamb.



February 20, 2007 10:09 AM | 3 Comments
  Martin Dwyer
Consultant Chef