This aromatic stew is even better the next day, once the spices have had time to really infuse the meat with flavor. Serve with a simple green salad dressed with a lemony vinaigrette.
Lamb & Dried Apricot Stew
2 Tbs. olive oil
1 1/2 lb. (750 g.) boneless lamb shoulder, trimmed and cut into 1-inch (2.5-cm.) cubes
1 large yellow onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 tsp. ground cumin
1/2 tsp. ground coriander
1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 cups (16 fl. oz./500 ml.) chicken broth
1 can (14 1/2 oz./455 g.) diced tomatoes
1 can (8 3/4 oz./270 g.) chickpeas, rinsed
1/4 cup (2 oz./60 g.) dried apricots, halved
1 cinnamon stick
3 Tbs. chopped flat-leaf parsley
In a large, heavy pot, warm the oil over medium-high heat. Cook the lamb in 2 batches until browned on all sides, 6-8 minutes per batch. Transfer to a bowl.
Add the onion and garlic and saute until soft, 5-7 minutes. Add the cumin, coriander and cayenne, season with 1/4 teaspoon black pepper, and cook, stirring constantly, for 2 minutes. Add the broth and bring to a simmer, stirring to scrape up any browned bits on the bottom of the pot. Add the tomatoes, chickpeas, apricots, cinnamon stick and lamb and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low, cover partially, and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the lamb is tender and the stew thickens, about 1 1/4 hours.
Stir in the parsley, season with salt and pepper, and serve. Serves 6-8.