Saturday, 23 February 2013

Moroccan Lamb Stew for Toddlers and the Whole Family

I fancied trying out a recipe with Ras el Hanout and wanted to cook something where the flavour would be out front and clear.  I always associate North African food with lamb so it seemed an obvious choice.

If you've not come across it, Ras el Hanout means "head of the shop" or "top of the shop" and that's because it contains lots of the best and most fragrant spices.  Depending on where you source it from will depend on how many different spices are in the mix.  To me it reminds me of an even more fragrant version of garam masala, it often contains sweet spices and even roses.

My son had some of this, not a complete success but he loved the spicy chickpeas.  This does build in flavour so if your child isn't one for spices maybe tone it down a bit or be careful not to serve too much of the spicy sauce.  Only one for over 1s though, honey isn't suitable for babies even if it's cooked.

Lamb Stew - serves 2 adults and 1 toddler with seconds of leftovers


1 tsp Olive oil
700g, 1 lb, 9oz Stewing Lamb (bone in, see below)
1 large onion, sliced
2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
2 tsp Ras el Hanout
1-2 tsp Honey
1 tin (240g drained weight) chickpeas
150ml, 5 fl oz vegetable stock (see below for tips)


Brown the lamb in the oil and then transfer to a slow cooker.  Fry the onion in the pan until softened and slightly brown, add the garlic for a minute or so and then transfer to the slow cooker.

Add the spice, honey, chickpeas and hot vegetable stock.  Bring to the bubble on high and then reduce to low for 4-5 hours or until falling off the bone.  This varies by slow cooker so be guided by it's normal performance.

Take the meat off the bones and discard the bones.  Serve with cous cous or bread.

I bought a stew pack of lamb in my internet shopping and got a mix of a small lamb shank and neck.  If I'd seen the pack beforehand, I probably wouldn't have chosen the pack, it was pretty bony but by I always think a stew cooked with bones is way tastier.

To make a quick vegetable stock, use onion trimmings, grated carrot and grated broccoli stalk, boil away for 10 minutes or so, sieve out the vegetables and done!  Salt free vegetable stock.

Moroccan soup

If you've got some ras-el-hanout left, try this Moroccan Chicken Soup recipe


  1. I 'had' planned my weekly meals but have just made a quick change to include this meal! Looks amazing !


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