The recipe for this stew came out of my desire to create something really yummy out of a half dozen lamb hears that my local grass-fed beef and lamb farmer gave me. However, you could just as easily follow the exact same recipe with lamb stew meat if either lamb heart meat is hard for you to find or intimidating.
Part of the unique Moroccan flavor of this stew comes from the use of red palm oil. I buy ethical red/virgin palm oil from Tropical Traditions. It’s crazy high in vitamin E and other antioxidants and has an amazing flavor that works so well with warm spices. If you can’t find red palm oil, you could substitute extra virgin coconut oil or tallow instead.
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This recipe is nightshade-free but does contain seed-based spices for those on the autoimmune protocol.
US Wellness Meats sells grass-fed lamb heart. You’ll need about 6 hearts for this recipe. If you want to use stew meat, you could buy chops or leg and cut into chunks yourself. US Wellness Meats sells kabob pieces which would work very well. GrassFed Traditions sells actual lamb stew meat, already butchered.
This stew is perfect served over a bed of cauliflower rice/couscous (so perfect, I’m including directions to make it!). And even though it isn’t depicted in the photo, it is delightful with chopped fresh cilantro sprinkled on top. Serves 5-6.
Ingredients (Cauliflower Couscous):
- 1 head of cauliflower (about 6 cups after being processed)
- 2 Tbsp extra virgin coconut oil
- Pulse cauliflower florets and stems in a Food Processor until it resembles small rice grains or large couscous grains (depending on your food processor, you might want to do this in batches). Note that this does not work very well with frozen cauliflower.
- Heat coconut oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat. Add cauliflower. Cook, stirring frequently, until the cauliflower is cooked al dente, about 6-7 minutes.
Ingredients (Lamb Stew):
- 2.5-3lbs lamb heart (about 6 hears) or substitute 3lbs lamb stew meat
- ½ cup red palm oil
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1 tsp coriander
- 1 tsp fennel seed
- 1 tsp fresh grated ginger
- 1 tsp turmeric
- 4 cloves garlic, crushed
- 2 Tbsp lemon juice
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 2 bay leaves
- ½ tsp salt, to taste
- ½ tsp pepper, to taste
- ½ cup dried apricots
- 4 small sweet potatoes
- 2 medium yellow onions
- 1/3 cup kalamata olives, pitted and sliced
- 2 cups bone broth (beef, lamb or chicken)
- Cut lamb hearts into 1-2” cubes (up to you how big or small). The only trimming you need to do with these hearts is to remove any large vessels (and even those will be tender enough to eat at the end). Place in a bowl or re-sealable plastic bag.
- Grind fennel seed (and any other whole spices you might be using) in a spice grinder or Magic Bullet (you could also grind with a mortar and pestle). Combine with cumin, coriander, ginger, turmeric garlic, red palm oil and lemon juice. Wisk to combine.
- Pour palm oil mixture over lamb and stir to coat. Cover/close bag and marinate in the refrigerator 4-6 hours or overnight (up to 24 hours).
- Slice onions in half and then into ½” semicircles. Slice olives if not already sliced. Finely chop apricots. Wash sweet potatoes (peel if desired) and slice into 1” pieces.
- Preheat oven to 300F.
- Heat a large stock pot over medium-high heat. Brown lamb pieces in batches (I did 3 batches). There should be enough oil on the lamb to brown without sticking, but if your pieces start to stick add an extra 1-2 Tbsp of palm oil (or marinade). It should only take 3-4 minutes to brown each batch. Remove lamb to a bowl.
- Add onion to the pot and cook until soft and caramelized, about 10 minutes (if you do not have enough fat in the pot left from browning the lamb, you may wish to add 1-2 Tbsp of palm oil).
- Place all the lamb and any leftover marinade back in the pot. Add sweet potato, olives, apricots, broth, cinnamon stick, bay leaves, salt and pepper (if your broth is very well seasoned, you might not need any salt).
- Cook uncovered in the oven for 2 hours. Enjoy!