Full of warming spices, this impressive looking Moroccan Lamb Shank Tagine is actually ridiculously easy to make and only takes 15 minutes of hands on time. The result is melt in the mouth lamb that just falls off the bone, with a rich, spicy sauce and just a touch of sweetness from the dried fruit and honey.
This Moroccan Lamb Shank Tagine is the kind of easy entertaining dish I love! Super easy to throw together and the oven does all the work, while you have time to put your glad rags on, make a dessert and faff around with your starter – all before your guests arrive! So you can enjoy your dinner party and actually spend time with your guests, rather than being hot and frazzled in the kitchen all evening. (In theory at least!)
Over the past year I have been working with the ‘LAMB. Tasty Easy Fun’ campaign to share with you my love of lamb and to create lots of easy peasy lamb recipes to show that cooking with lamb need not be difficult or time consuming…but always tastes delicious!
Lamb shanks are one of my favourite cuts, as they always look so impressive, but are quite economical and really not hard to cook at all – just brown them off, make a sauce and then give them a long slow cook in that sauce in the oven. The slow cooking will transform the shanks into super tender meat and the sauce into something rich and unctuous – and all your guests will think you are a culinary genius…don’t worry, I can keep the secret 😉
In fact this Moroccan Lamb Shank Tagine is so easy, you really don’t need to wait for your next dinner party to make it…why not make it instead of your usual Sunday roast this weekend? Or even as a midweek treat – who says this kind of dish has to be saved for special occasions?
I like to serve this Moroccan Lamb Shank Tagine with bulgur wheat, but it would also go well with couscous or flatbreads. If you are doing this for a dinner party, you could get a bit fancy with your accompaniments and go for my Easy Tabbouleh Salad, my Persian Jewelled Rice or this delicious Moroccan Spiced Roasted Vegetable Traybake.
If you have any leftovers (I doubt it, given how yummy this is, but you never know!), simply shred the meat of the bone. Mix it with the sauce and put it in the fridge to be reheated for a yummy lunch the next day, or put it in the freezer for a quick and easy meal in the future!
This Moroccan Lamb Shank Tagine would be lovely with a Cotes du Rhone or a similar style rustic red from the south of France. Alternatively a young Rioja would work well here (look out for the words Joven or Crianza on the bottle).
Moroccan Lamb Shank Tagine
- 4 tablespoons olive or rapeseed oil
- 4 small lamb shanks roughly 300g / 10oz each
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 2 red onions diced
- 4 cloves garlic crushed or grated
- 3 cm piece of ginger grated
- 1 teaspoon chilli flakes
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 2 teaspoons smoked paprika
- 2 teaspoons turmeric
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 2 x 400g tin chopped tomatoes
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 12 dates or apricots chopped into small pieces
- 400 g tin chickpeas drained
- 2 tablespoons coriander (cilantro)
- Bulgur wheat, couscous or flatbreads to serve
Preheat your oven to 160C/ 140C fan / gas mark 3 / 325F.
Heat the oil in a large hob proof casserole dish, season the lamb and then brown the lamb on all sides in the hot pan.
Remove the lamb from the casserole dish and turn down the heat. Add the onion and cook over a gentle heat with the lid on for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Add the garlic, ginger, chilli and spices and cook for a further 3 minutes. Add a splash of water if it starts to get too dry.
Add the chopped tomatoes, honey and the lamb shanks, lying the lamb shanks down on one side so they are half submerged in the sauce, and bring back to the boil. Cover and place in the preheated oven for 45minutes.
After 45 minutes, remove the casserole from the oven and carefully turn the lamb so it is lying on the other side, cover and put back in the oven for another 45 minutes.
After this further 45 minutes, remove the casserole from the oven, turn the lamb so it is now sitting with the bone sticking upwards, add the dates and drained chickpeas, leave uncovered this time, and return the lamb to the oven for a final 30 minutes (a total of 2 hours in the oven).
During this final 30 minutes you can prepare the accompaniments - I like to serve this with bulgur wheat, but it would also go well with couscous or flatbreads.
When the lamb has finished cooking, remove from the oven, scatter with coriander and serve with the accompaniments.
Nutrition information is approximate and meant as a guideline only.
This is a collaborative post with the ‘LAMB. Tasty Easy Fun’ campaign. ‘LAMB. Tasty Easy Fun’ is an EU funded campaign which aims to increase the use of lamb in everyday cooking. Lamb is often considered difficult to cook, expensive, or something to be saved for Sunday roasts. The aim of the campaign is to demonstrate just how tasty, easy and fun lamb is to cook with every day of the week! They also have a wonderful website, full of tasty and easy lamb recipes that go way beyond the traditional roast lamb we all know and love.
Want more delicious lamb recipes? Find more here…
Want more Middle Eastern Inspired Recipes? Find more here…
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