I've had a real craving for lamb recently, it's my favourite meat and I suppose quite traditional at this time of year. In fact, my local supermarket ran out of mint sauce this week, luckily I had an emergency pot stashed away - am I the only person that does that? Anyway, This lamb recipe uses mince and Harissa paste. Most supermarket sell this spice mix now, usually in their fancy spices/sauces section.
Harissa is a chili paste used in North Africa. The main ingredients are a mix of chili peppers along with garlic, coriander and caraway. It is a standard ingredient in food from Morocco and the inspiration for this dish.
I’ve also added cinnamon, cumin and smoked paprika which all have an earthiness that completments the harissa adding to the moroccan influence.
500g Lamb Mince
1 Onion Chopped
1 tsp Ground Cumin
1/2 tsp Smoked Paprika
Pinch Ground Cloves
1 Large Bunch Coriander Chopped
2tbsp Harrisa Paste
400g tin Chopped Tomatoes
4 Tomatoes Chopped
400ml Chicken Stock
1 Cinnamon Stick
Using your hands mix the lamb, onion, cumin, paprika, cloves, half the coriander leaves and egg till well combined.
Next form the meat into walnut sized meatballs - I made about 20, then brown them in a pan with a little oil.
Remove them from the pan and add the harissa. Cook the paste for a minute then add the tomatoes, stock and cinnamon. If you snap the cinnamon stick in half it helps to release the flavour.
Simmer the sauce for 15 minutes then return the meatballs and simmer for a further 20 minutes until cooked.
To finish, stir through the rest of the coriander.
I have served the stew with pasta but steamed cous cous, rice or mashed potato all work well with the thick rich sauce.