More pumpkin… with an oriental touch

November 15th, 2008 § 0 comments

Pumpkins are still beautiful on the market stalls and as usual, I couldn’t resist… 
It was a long time since I reached out for my tajine far away on the upper kitchen shelf and pumpkin goes so well with the traditionnal spices for tajines like ginger and cinnamon.
I had to give it a try.

And it was all worth it: the fragrant and warm tajine with lamb and pumpkin that came out of the kitchen was gone in no time.

Pumpkin Tajine
A tajine with an automnal vibe

Pumpkin and lamb tajine
Tajine d’agneau au potiron

serves 3 pers.
prep: 20 min. cook: 1 hrs 45 min

600 g stewing lam* (count 200g extra if you have bones),  in ~5 cm/2 inch cubes
1 medium size pumpkin or butternut squash (~ 600g), peeled, seeded, in chunks,
250 g onions, peeled and chopped,
1 shallot, peeled and chopped,
30 g butter,
1 Tsp olive oil,
1/4 tsp five spice powder,
1/4 tsp ginger,
1 pinch cinnamon,
1 pinch nutmeg,
2 pods star anis,
1 pinch saffron,
15 cl water or tea,
To finish up:
1 Tsp honey,
1 Tsp argan oil (optional)
salt and pepper to taste,

In  a mortar, crush/mix all the spices with some salt and pepper (I use about 1/2 Tsp sea salt flakes and 1/2 tsp peppercorns, but seasoning is quite personal so follow your hart). 

Melt the butter and oil in a heat resistant tajine (or a cocotte/dutch oven) on diffuse high heat. Brown the meat on all sides and season it with 1/3rd of the spices. Add the onions and shallot, sprinkle with 1/3rd of the spices and leave to sweat for a couple of minutes. Pour the water or tea (I used citrus tea), bring to a gentle simmer and then lower the heat and simmer covered for 1hr15 min. Check from time to time and add extra water if necessary.

Then add the pumpkin chunks and season with the rest of the spices. Simmer covered for 30 min or until the meat is tender. About 15 min before the end, toss in 1 Tsp honey and 1 Tsp argan oil.

Bon appétit!

* Any stewing piece will do: neck, breast, shoulder… I used boned neck. Do not be afraid to use meat with bones as they often do in Morrocco. It always adds flavour.

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