Ian's Lamb Tajine

We acquired this recipe from a friend in Japan whom we lived with for six months after returning to Pensacola. He grew up in South Africa and this recipe was given to his family while living there. One not found on the internet.

When we cook lamb this is the recipe we use.

"A synthesis of various recipes. I find a saute pan with a tight cover works just as well as a couscousiere. I remove the lamb fat and replace it with butter because I like it better that way.  A generous amount of saffron is necessary - don't stint it. 

This recipe really serves only one; scale up everything but the spices as desired. 

2 largish small loin lamb chops (or Saratoga chops; I use loin chops just because they're easier to bone)
4 T butter
6-8 small onions, peeled but whole (or equivalent chopped onion, white)
knob of ginger as big as the end of your thumb, grated
handful white raisins
4-5 T tomato puree
large pinch saffron (say two dozen threads)
2 sticks cinnamon
pepper (can be white pepper)

Bone the chops, discard the bones, trim all fat and discard. 

Brown the lamb.

Add all other ingredients, water if using a saute pan (not needed in couscousiere and maybe not in saute pan). Cook over low heat for 30 minutes, ensuring there is not too much liquid at the end.

I like it with a a fairly thick sauce; if you serve over couscous you might want more liquid. 

I usually serve it with rice, though."

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