Moroccan cammama (spiced lamb with onions)

Yield: 4 Servings

Measure Ingredient
3 tablespoons Olive oil
2½ pounds Lamb shoulder; boneless/trim
1 large Onion; chopped
1 teaspoon Cinnamon, ground
¼ teaspoon Ginger, ground
½ teaspoon Cumin seeds; toasted/crushed
1 pinch Saffron; crumbled
1 teaspoon Red chilies, dried; crushed
2 larges Cloves garlic; minced
¼ cup Cilantro, fresh; chopped
Salt & pepper to taste
2 Orange peel strips; 3" long
2 tablespoons Honey
3 Lemons
Chicken broth; or water
6 larges Onions, yellow; halved and sliced into crescents
Cilantro, fresh; sprigs

Cut the lamb into 1-inch pieces. Heat the olive oil in a large casserole over medium heat. Add the lamb and chopped onion and saute 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Add the cinnamon, ginger, cumin, saffron, chilies, garlic, cilantrol, salt, pepper, orange peel, honey, juice of 1 lemon, and enough chicken broth or water to just cover ingredients. Cover the casserole and simmer very slowly 2 hours, stirring occasionally.

Add the yellow onions, stir well, cover, and simmer 20 minutes, or until onions are just tender.

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.

With a slotted spoon, transfer ingredients to a large bowl. Raise heat to high and reduce liquid by half. Add juice of the remaining lemons, stirring well. Return ingredients to casserole, stir until blended, taste for seasonings, and place in the preheated oven, uncovered. When the top of the cammama is slightly glazed, serve immediately, garnished with a few sprigs of cilantro, and accompanied by rice, Date and Onion Sambal, a salad of diced cucumbers and ripe tomatoes dressed with oil, vinegar, and salt, and a basket of warm pita bread.

AFTERTHOUGHT: You may substitute boned chicken thighs for the lamb if you wish.

Source: "Lilies of the Kitchen" by Barbara Batcheller

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