In Morocco, couscous is cooked in a ‘couscoussier’, a traditional Moroccan two-level pot that cooks the lamb and steams the couscous at the same time. In lieu of a couscoussier, use a large casserole dish or saucepan.
- 6 x 300 g lamb shanks
- 1 cup chermoula
- 80 ml (⅓ cup) olive oil
- 1 onion, halved, finely sliced
- 3 ripe tomatoes, roughly chopped
- 1 carrot, cut into quarters lengthwise
- 1 zucchini, cut into quarters lengthwise
- 1 parsnip, cut into quarters lengthwise
- 200 g butternut pumpkin, cut into thin wedges
- 250 g couscous
- ½ tsp saffron threads, soaked in hot water
- 200 g unpodded broad beans
- 400 g can chickpeas, drained
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
Marinating time 4 hours
Place lamb in a bowl or container and rub with chermoula. Cover and refrigerate for 4 hours, or overnight if possible.
Heat 40 ml olive oil in a large casserole or saucepan over high heat. Season lamb with salt and cook, turning, for 6 minutes or until golden brown. Cover with 1.5 litres (6 cups) of water and gently bring to the boil. Reduce heat to low and add onion, tomatoes and carrot and cook for 1 hour or until carrot is very soft. Add zucchini, parsnip and pumpkin and cook for 1½ hours or until lamb is very tender.
Place couscous in a bowl and cover with cold water. Add saffron threads and season with salt. Soak for 10 minutes. Drain and cook according to packet instructions. Keep warm.
Blanch broad beans in boiling, salted water for 30 seconds or until bright green, then drain and refresh under cold water. Drain, then pod beans from shells and add to lambwith chickpeas. Stir to combine.
Place shanks on a serving platter with couscous and top with vegetables and stew.
Photography Tom Donald.
As seen in Feast magazine, October 2014, Issue 36.