Dr Clare Bailey’s lamb and squash tagine

Get to love fibre-packed chickpeas (I like to slip them into salads and stews) to help you feel fuller for longer and to be kind to your gut microbes, so they in turn can help your brain. Butternut squash and nuts give this tagine an extra healthy boost. Serve accompanied by green veg such as thin green beans or steamed leaves with brown rice, quinoa or bulgur wheat. 

lamb and squash tagine
Chris Alack

SERVES 4

4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 large onion, peeled and thinly sliced
500g lamb neck fillet, trimmed and cut into roughly 3cm chunks
2 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
2 tbsp harissa paste (ideally rose harissa)
2 x 400g cans chopped tomatoes
400g can organic chickpeas in water (not drained)
1 lamb or vegetable stock cube, crumbled
400g butternut squash, scrubbed, deseeded and cut into roughly 3cm chunks (peel if you prefer)
15g bunch fresh coriander, leaves coarsely chopped
20g toasted flaked almonds
sea salt and black pepper

1. Preheat the oven to 190C/170C fan/gas 5.

2. Put the oil and the chopped onion in a medium flameproof casserole over a low heat. As soon as the onion begins to sizzle, add all the ingredients except the butternut squash, fresh coriander and flaked almonds.

3. Stir in 100ml water. Season with a little sea salt and lots of ground black pepper. Bring to a gentle simmer, stirring occasionally.

4. Cover the casserole with a lid and cook in the oven for 45 minutes. Take out of the oven, stir in the squash then cover again and cook for 45-60 minutes, or until the lamb is very tender and the sauce has thickened.

5. Add a little freshly boiled water if needed to loosen the sauce and stir in half the chopped coriander leaves. Sprinkle the remaining coriander and flaked almonds on top just before serving. 

Food styling by Clare Lewis. Styling by Sue Radcliffe.