This is a dish of fabulous contrasts – rich lamb, crunchy pistachios, fresh mint and sweet, tangy pomegranate. It needs to cook low and slow so the lamb ends up gorgeously tender, but although it takes time, there’s really not that much effort involved.
A note on ingredients – lamb neck fillet works well for this dish, as it’s a cheaper cut that really benefits from the long slow cooking process.
450g diced lamb
1 large onion
2 fat garlic cloves
1 tsp ground cinnamon
500ml lamb or chicken stock
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
250g long grain rice
A small bunch of fresh mint
A big handful of pomegranate cells
A big handful of Pistachio Provence raw pistachios
- Heat a small splash of olive oil in a heavy bottomed pan, and gently fry the lamb until just brown – no more than a few minutes. Transfer the lamb to a plate.
- Finely dice the onion and garlic and fry in the juices left behind by the lamb. Cut a couple of thick slices of lemon, and trim the peel off on all sides. Once the onion has softened, add the ground cinnamon and the lemon slices to the pan and fry for another minute or two.
- Return the lamb to the pan and pour in enough stock to just cover the ingredients – you may not need it all. Season with a little salt (you don’t need much) and freshly ground black pepper. Bring to the boil, then cover the pan, turn the heat right down and cook for about two hours, stirring every now and then.
- After two hours, take the lid off the pan and turn the heat up to reduce the liquid – you only want a small amount remaining. In the meantime, prepare the rice according to the instructions on the packet.
- Finally, place the lamb under the grill for a few minutes – just until it starts to caramelise on top. Use a pair of forks to pull the pieces apart (they should be really tender by now), and then add the cooked rice to the pan and stir through. Serve with chopped fresh mint, pomegranate cells and chopped Pistachio Provenance raw pistachios sprinkled on top.