1/4 cup olive oil
2 Tablespoons butter
1 1/2 pounds lamb shoulder chops or stew meat
1 large onion - chopped fine (can be done in food processor)
2 Tablespoons Ras El Hanout*
*Ras El Hanout is a Moroccan spice blend. If you can't find it at a gourmet store, here is a recipe for it. Otherwise, substitute 1 teaspoon each ground coriander, cinnamon, ginger, cumin, and 1/4 teaspoon allspice, ground cloves.)
This recipe is derived from Saveur's November 2012 issue.
Heat olive oil in Dutch oven. Brown lamb shoulder chops on both sides. Remove to a plate to hold.
Melt butter in Dutch oven. Saute onions and garlic until transparent. Add spices and stir. Add 3 cups of water. Return lamb to pot. Bring to a boil and then place in 250 degree oven and cook very slowly for 2 1/2 hours. Remove pot from oven and add almonds, raisins, and honey. Return to oven and cook for another 1 1/2 to 2 hours adding extra liquid if it has evaporated. The lamb is done when it is falling off the bones. Remove and let cool. Remove the bones from the stew before serving.
NOTE: If you won't be home to add the almonds and raisins half way through the cooking, add them in the beginning. They may be a little softer but just as tasty.
If you have time, let the Mrouzia sit for a day or two in the refrigerator. Skim the excess fat off the top of the pot before warming. If there is too much sauce, cook without a lid to let the sauce thicken. Serve over rice or couscous.
Alternately, cook everything in a crock pot and it will be delicious too!