A return to the kitchen and home cooking...

Inspired by the beautiful Morocco!

There is nothing better than home-cooked food! Best of all is the gathering of a family over a home cooked meal, sharing their thoughts, their day and simply being together as a family. These are the essentials of family living and the memories of our children in the making. Let us try and slow down, enjoy our family, kids and cooking. Let us find that Balance, there is no better Reward!


This a sweet and savoury dish that will tickle your taste buds. It is my absolute favourite Moroccan concoction! This classic Moroccan tagine of lamb and prunes just mix together like a harmonious symphony. It is a dish with distinguished flavours, with a deep rich sauce that will satisfy all your cravings. The sweetness of the prunes and apricots is balanced by the seasoning, spices, and the melt-in-your-mouth lamb meat making this dish the perfect indulgence.

A dish about Balance!

The art in making this dish lies in finding the balance between the sweet and the savoury flavours. If you add too much fruit, the tagine will come out too sweet, and somewhat tiring for the palate. If you barely add the fruits, the flavour will be shallow and incomplete. The addition of orange blossom water is classic to this recipe, but make sure you do not over do it as it will add a bitter note to your tagine. It can be omitted, but then it won’t be the classic Lamb & Prune Tagine and it actually makes this dish, so I really recommend you don’t take it out. In fact, a slight hint of orange blossom water lends this dish its distinguished flavour, and almost takes you to the streets of Casablanca in the open market where hints of this aroma are always present.

It is customary to serve this dish with a side serving of green and black olives, the savoury flavours of which will perfectly suit this tagine. Tagine is commonly served on its own, or with a side serving of bread. I like to have it with a side of couscous, as I find the textures to be great together. But this serving with couscous is my personal preference and not the authentic Moroccan way to serve this tagine.

Finally, I am not too big on the dried apricots here, I find they distract from the prune-meat heaven. So I usually omit them, although the traditional recipe includes them. I go for only prune and meat with some toasted almonds. But you may want to stick to the original and keep the apricots.

Here is how it’s made…


Serves: 4
  • 1 KG lamb shanks (on the bone or boned)
  • 2 large brown onions, sliced
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ground turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp DS Himalayan Pink Salt
  • Freshly cracked black pepper to taste
  • a pinch of saffron
  • 1 small bunch fresh coriander, finely chopped
  • 1 small bunch of parsley, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup DS Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 750 ml water
  • 250g dried prunes, stoned
  • 150g dried apricots (optional)
  • 2 tbsp orange blossom water
  • 100 ml water
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 tbsp sesame seeds
  • 2 tbsp raw honey

In a small bowl, mix together the chopped coriander and chopped parsley and set aside.

In a separate bowl marinate the meat pieces, by placing them along with the ground spices, crushed garlic and half the quantity of the mixed chopped herbs. Add half the quantity of the olive oil and mix to coat all evenly. Leave to marinate in the fridge for 1-2 hours.

Once done, heat the remaining olive oil and saute the sliced onions until translucent but not browned, add the meat pieces and any remaining marinade then stir to coat. Brown the meat slightly on all sides.

Add the water and stir scraping the bottoms then bring to a boil. Once boiled, cover the pot and leave to simmer for 1 hour.

15 minutes before the end of cooking, place the honey, cinnamon stick and 100 ml of water in a sauce pan. Bring the mixture to a boil, then add the stoned prunes (and apricots if using). Stir to coat and allow to simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in the orange blossom water, then the sesame seeds and coat all.

Once the meat is done cooking, add the prunes mixture to the tagine and dress with the toasted almonds if using, then garnish with the remaining chopped herbs. Serve immediately.

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