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Middle Eastern Lamb & Green Bean Tagine

tajineWhen we think of Easter time, two must-have dishes spring to mind, Lamb and Green Bean Casserole.  While Easter is officially over, we’re inspired to combine the two together this spring for an unusual, but no less delicious entrée – a Moroccan-inspired Lamb and Green Bean Tagine.

This savory, slow-simmered stew is named for the conical, earthenware vessel in which it’s cooked.  The domed lid of a Tagine traps steam and returns the condensed liquid to the pot, requiring a minimal amount of water to tenderize meats and vegetables.  We’ve adapted our recipe to cook in an everyday pot, but if you happen to own a Tajine (or feel like purchasing one as they’re very attractive), by all means, use it!

If using an actual Tagine, just place it in a slow cooking oven (no higher than 350 degrees), or set it on top of a stove, using the lowest heat necessary to keep the stew simmering.  It’s also recommended to use a diffuser – a circular piece of aluminum placed between the tagine and burner – to protect the base of the clay vessel, and more evenly distribute the stove’s heat.  Then follow our recipe for a seriously savory, intensely aromatic, and entirely original Sunday supper!

Lamb and Green Bean Tajine
Serves 6

3 tablespoons oil
2 lbs boneless lamb shoulder, cut into 1 inch chunks
1 medium onion, chopped
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon salt, to taste
1/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/4 teaspoon saffron
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
4 cups water
1 1/2 lbs green beans, cut into 2 inch pieces
2 diced tomatoes
1 medium onion, sliced in rings
1 preserved lemon, quartered
4 tablespoons parsley, chopped
couscous, for serving

Heat oil in a tajine or large pot.  Add the lamb, onion, and garlic, and sauté until the lamb is browned.  Add the salt, pepper, cumin, cayenne, saffron and turmeric, and sauté a minute more.

Add the water and tomatoes and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat, cover the pot, and simmer for about 45 minutes.

Add the green beans and simmer for about 10 minutes more, until almost tender.  Add the sliced onion, preserved lemon and parsley, and simmer for another ten minutes.

Serve hot over couscous.


  1. Love this simple yet delicious recipe. I have added the link to our tagine recipe list. I hope you don’t mind.

    We would love you to submit a recipe to our dedicated tagine website. Drop us an email if you are interested.

    Happy cooking, The Chef

  2. Well written recipe on Tajine and one that seems easy to follow. I’ll give it a try this weekend. Did you get it from some Moroccan friends?

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