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Moroccan Honey Lamb & Date Tagine With Butternut Couscous

Published by: Chef Braam Botha • Updated: January 30, 2024 • Checked By: Chef Matty Riedel

You can use pretty much any cut of lamb to make this dish. I’ve found that goulash creates an ‘easy to eat’ boneless version. The lamb is slow-cooked in a blend of Moroccan spices and chicken or lamb stock until completely tender. The sauce will turn a deep dark brown after adding the dates and becomes quite sticky after adding the honey.

Moroccan Honey Lamb & Date Tagine With Butternut Couscous Recipe

Moroccan Honey Lamb Recipe
Moroccan Honey Lamb & Date Tagine with Butternut Couscous
Click The Stars Below To Rate This Recipe:
5 from 2 votes
PREP TIME 10 minutes
COOK TIME 2 hours
COURSE Main Course
CUISINE Moroccan
SERVINGS 4 people
CALORIES 1062 kcal



For The Tagine

  • 720 g Lamb goulash
  • 20 ml Olive oil blend
  • 160 g White onion
  • 8 g Chopped garlic
  • 4 g Garam masala spice
  • 4 g Whole cumin spice
  • 4 g Mustard powder
  • 4 g Chicken stock 
  • 4 g Whole coriander
  • 4 g Smoked paprika
  • 4 g Castor sugar
  • 28 g Dates
  • 40 g Honey
  • 60 g Flaked almonds
  • 40 g Fresh Coriander

For The Butternut Couscous

  • 260 g Butternut
  • 20 ml Olive oil
  • 4 g Turmeric spice
  • 4 g Salt
  • 20 g White onion
  • 4 g Chopped garlic
  • 320 g Couscous
  • 4 g Castor sugar
  • 320 ml Water for stock


For The Lamb

  • Heat 15ml oil in pan, add the lamb in batches, cook stirring continuously until browned, drain on absorbent paper.
  • Heat remaining oil in same pan, add onions, garlic and spices, cook stirring until onions are browned
  • Return lamb, cover with stock & water simmer for 2 hours
  • Remove lid, reduce until sauce is thickened and dark, stir in dates, honey nuts and coriander

For The Butternut Couscous

  • Cut butternut into 2cm cubes
  • Drizzle with olive oil and coat evenly, season with salt turmeric and castor sugar
  • Roast in preheated oven at 180c until tender
  • In a pot heat olive oil and gently sauté chopped onion till browned add crushed garlic
  • Add couscous and butternut, add enough boiling water to cover couscous, bring to a boil and remove from heat
  • Keep lid on and leave to steam for about 5-10min, gently fluff with a fork
Chefs Tips
This dish can be cooked in a normal pot on the stove if you do not have a traditional tagine. The tagine will add authenticity to the dish but won’t impact the flavour too much. Ensure to add enough dates to the dish to have it turn a deep dark brown when fully cooked.
Nutritional Information
Calories: 1062kcalCarbohydrates: 96gProtein: 46gFat: 56gSaturated Fat: 20gPolyunsaturated Fat: 6gMonounsaturated Fat: 26gTrans Fat: 0.003gCholesterol: 131mgSodium: 515mgPotassium: 1121mgFiber: 10gSugar: 19gVitamin A: 8079IUVitamin C: 21mgCalcium: 160mgIron: 6mg
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Moroccan Honey Lamb: Summing Up

Moroccan cuisine is known for its vibrant flavours and diverse influences, including Berber, Moorish, Mediterranean, and Arab. Tagine, the dish’s namesake, is the cooking vessel and the stew cooked within it. This conical earthenware pot is central to Moroccan cooking and helps to slow-cook meat and vegetables, infusing them with spices and flavours. The combination of lamb and dates is a classic in Moroccan cooking, reflecting the cuisine’s penchant for blending sweet and savoury elements. While not traditional, butternut couscous adds a modern twist to this classic dish. Moroccan cuisine is deeply rooted in its history and culture, making it a rich and diverse culinary tradition.

Moroccan Honey Lamb: FAQs

Can I Use Beef or Chicken Instead of Lamb?

Yes, beef or chicken can be used as alternatives. Beef offers a similar richness to lamb, while chicken is a lighter option. Adjust cooking times accordingly.

What Are Vegetarian Alternatives To Lamb?

Chickpeas, lentils, or firm tofu can be used as vegetarian substitutes. They absorb the spices well and offer a hearty texture.

I Don’t Have A Tagine. Can I Still Make This Dish?

Absolutely! A slow cooker or a heavy-bottomed pot with a lid, such as a Dutch Oven, can be used as an alternative to a tagine.

Is It Possible To Prepare This Dish In Advance?

Yes, this dish can be prepared in advance and reheated. The flavours will deepen when left to sit.

What Are The Essential Spices For This Dish?

Key spices include cumin, cinnamon, and ginger. These provide an authentic Moroccan flavour.

How Can I Adjust The Sweetness?

Reduce the honey or dates to lessen the sweetness, or add lemon juice for balance.

Looking for more tasty recipes? Try one of these tonight:
Cottage Pie With Cauliflower Mash & Parmesan
Slow Braised Beef Short Ribs With Homemade BBQ Sauce, Corn Bread & Creamed Spinach
Crunchy Lamb Balls With Yellow Yogurt Sauce
Grilled Sirloin, Hasselback Potato, Pumpkin Fritters & Chakalaka
Hearty Beef Pot Pies With Green Beans & Mashed Potato

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Chef Braam Botha