Spiced Lamb & Beef Tagine w/Lemon Garlic Couscous & Labneh

 

 

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Been while, but now that I have unlimited free time figured might as well.  Tagine for anyone who is actually reading this is a North African stew and can be made with any meat or rice you want. I used couscous, lamb, and beef combined with a spice blend known as ras el hanout. How in the hell did I get to know of this dish? I ate it once while working at sea with a libya crew lord knows what type of meat it was, but from my broken arabic that I speak I was able to ask for a basic recipe then pieced it back together via various google searches.

What I like about the dish is it can be anything you want spicy, sweet, or savory. It is also a really good way to clean out the left over veggies you got laying around.  I’m sure my mom who is probably the only person reading now knows I buy Swiss Chard I’m in trouble when I go home for never eating it as a kid.

Below Makes 2 Servings probably around 800 calories each

  • 10 ounces ground lamb and beef 50/50
  • 3/4 cup couscous
  • 4 gloves of garlic
  • 1 lemon
  • 1/2 bunch of swiss chard
  • small handful of mint
  • 3 dates I used Medjool a much sweeter date, but sure any will work
  • 1/4 cup white onion diced
  • 1/4 tomato chopped fine
  • 2 table spoons tomato paste
  • 2 table spons of Ras El Hanout i bought mine in a small bag in the ethnic grocery store aisle. Per the bag it is cardamom, cumin, clove, cinnamon, nutmeg, mace, allspice, dry ginger, chili peppers, coriander seed, peppercorn, sweet and hot paprika, and dry turmeric
  • 1/4 cup Labneh cheese can sub plain yogurt.

Step 1

Wash and dry the fresh produce. Peel and mince the garlic. Using a peeler, remove the yellow rind of the lemon, avoiding the white pith; mince the rind to get 2 teaspoons of zest. Quarter and deseed the lemon. Dice onions and tomatoes into small cubes. Separate the chard leaves and stems; roughly chop the leaves and thinly slice the stems, keeping them separate.  Pit and roughly chop the dates. Pick the mint leaves off the stems; discard the stems.

Step 2

Add some olive to the pan get it hot then add half the garlic and season that son of a bitch with salt and pepper.  Cook till its brown then drop in the couscous and add 1 1/2 cups of water. Boil then let stand for 6 minutes or until the water is absorbed then fluff it with a fork. Sounds stupid but it works add the lemon zest and juice fluff with the fork taste for seasoning set aside.

Step 3 Starting the tagine:

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Multitask people multitask While the couscous cooks, in a large, high-sided pan (or pot), heat 2 teaspoons of olive oil on medium-high until hot. Add the the veggies aand remaining garlic; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, 2 to 4 minutes, or until lightly browned and softened. Add the tomato paste and ras el hanout; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring frequently, 1 to 2 minutes, or until fragrant and the tomato paste is dark red.

Step 4: Add the meat…cook till brown…move on

Step 5: Add a little bite of water maybe 1/2 cup to a cup depending on how stewy you want it. I went with 1/2 a cup I wanted it to be a little thicker and saucy.

Step 6:

While the tagine simmers, in a bowl, combine the labneh and the juice of the remaining lemon wedges; season with salt and pepper to taste. Mixed with couscous and mint place into a bowl add tangine on top.

Add red pepper flake for extra  spicy and various herbs I had basil in the kitchen, tarragon,  and sage.

Thanks to blue apron for the idea

 

 

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