Around the time I turned 21, I was doing a six-month co-op for Johnson and Johnson in New Jersey. It was a wonderful experience; I loved the job and it made the commute home to Connecticut relatively short. The weekend before my birthday I went home to celebrate with my mom, stepdad, and grandpa. We had a wonderful celebration eating, gabbing, and laughing, and my mom surprised me with a beautiful Le Creuset tagine.
That was the last birthday I got to celebrate with my grandpa. But I am so lucky, because now whenever I cook with the tagine I think back to that night and all of my wonderful memories with my grandpa.
This lamb and date tagine recipe offers delicate and delicious flavors. The meat is exceptionally tender and holds a light sweetness from the dates. A dear friend of mine just returned to California after a long time away. I could not think of a better recipe to celebrate his return, as this recipe makes you feel right at home.
Lamb and Date Tagine Recipe
2 pounds tender Lamb (I used Lamb shoulder)
1 cup seeded dates
1 yellow onion
2 cloves garlic, chopped finely
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon saffron threads
1/2 teaspoon white pepper
1/2 teaspoon curry powder
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/2 cup water
Parsley or Cilantro (optional)
Slice the onions into very thin rounds.
Remove the fat from the Lamb and cut it into 1/2 inch pieces.
Halve the seeded dates.
Cover the bottom of a tagine or crockpot with all of the oil. Next, layer the onion slices delicately, so they make a base for the pan. Cover the onions with the meat, dates, garlic, and spices. Cover with water.
Place the cover on the tagine or crockpot and heat on a low simmer until the meat is completely tender about 1.5 hours. Once, the meat is completely tender I gave it one delicate stir and served with a little fresh parsley.