The recipe below came from my good friend Gareth. It's really a pretty easy dish to make and has a nice spicy (not hot) taste to it. Since lamb is both expensive and hard to find he often substitutes beef. As I always say – when you cook from scratch you have the ability to experiment and change the recipe to suit your taste. I prefer to cut the cinnamon in this recipe down to ¼ tsp as I don't like too much cinnamon in my food. Traditionally this dish was probably served with or over rice or couscous. However you can add chickpeas to it like a lot of people do today, or add lentils, or potatoes to it, or serve it over quinoa, bulgur wheat or even pasta.
2 onions, finely chopped
2 Tbl olive oil
1 tsp cinnamon
½ tsp coriander
½ tsp cumin
¼ tsp ginger or ½ inch sliced ginger root
¼ tsp saffron or turmeric
¼ tsp mastic (optional – used as a thickener)
½ lb dried apricots, diced
1/3 c almonds, chopped fine or ground
1 tsp rose water (optional – adds a rose flavor/scent to the dish)
black pepper to taste
salt to taste
Heat oil in large skillet. Brown meat with onion, salt & spices. Add apricots and almonds, cover with water, cook slow for about 2 hour, sprinkle with rose water. Add water depending on how thick you like your stew. Serve hot over rice or couscous.
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