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I saw a version of this stew prepared on the UK tv show "Come Dine with Me," as made by Nathalie, the week's winner. The online version of the recipe was a bit different from how she prepared it on tv, so I followed what I saw her do, rather than what was online, and the results were amazing. No wonder the guests voted for her to win and went back for second helpings! The cut of lamb she used was neck fillet, which comes out very tender in slow cooking... if you can't get that cut, use shoulder meat, but not leg or it will get stringy. She used packets of ASDA brand Reason to Season Moroccan Lamb, I used real Ras al Hanout, which I added very liberally. I gave a measurement as a guess, but I didn't measure the seasoning accurately. My Ras al Hanout did not contain any salt, so I did need to add some salt as well, I think the packets she used came pre-salted however. I used salt only after browning the meat, and then again after the stew was ready.
- 1 tablespoon olive oil, to brown meat, to taste
- 1 1⁄2 kg lamb necks, fillets, cut into chunks (5 neck fillets, 3 pounds)
- 2 garlic cloves, minced in food processor
- salt, to taste
- 1 onion, halved and slivered very finely (huge)
- 250 g button mushrooms, halved
- 2 (400 g) cans chopped tomatoes
- 2 small courgettes, cut into chunks
- 1 (400 g) can chickpeas, drained
- 3 tablespoons moroccan seasoning, approx, to taste (Ras al Hanout or Reason to Season)
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste (to taste)
- Brown the meat chunks in a large skilllet with a small amount of olive oil, adding some minced garlic.
- Pour the pan contents into a large metal lasagna pan, then place the slivered onions on top, and add the Moroccan seasoning packet (or maybe 2) or a hearty amount of Ras al Hanout (I also added a bit of salt here), the courgettes, mushrooms,the drained chickpeas, pour tomatoes & their juice on top, then squirt ribbons of tomato paste across the top.
- Give it all a good stir, then cover tightly with foil or pan lid.
- Bake in a preheated 375 F oven (gas mark 5 , 190 C, 170 C Fan) for 2 hours, no peeking.
- After 2 hours, remove the lid, stir and taste for seasonings, adding more salt and additional seasoning until it is to your liking.
- On the show, this was served this with "Sammy's Couscous - Sundried Tomato and Mediterranean Herb", ignoring the package instructions and dumping the whole box into a bowl, covering with 1 pint of boiling water, stirring, let sit a few minutes, stirring again, then sauteeing in some butter in a skillet before serving.