Marrakech lamb with tahini squash gratin

Marrakech lamb with tahini squash gratin

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(5 ratings)

Prep: 30 mins Cook: 1 hr, 50 mins

More effort

Serves 6
Spice up your Sunday lunch with this Moroccan roast lamb, bursting with North African flavours - coriander, cumin, cinnamon and mint

Nutrition and extra info

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal960
  • fat62g
  • saturates22g
  • carbs30g
  • sugars13g
  • fibre9g
  • protein67g
  • salt1.3g
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  • 1.6-1.8kg boned shoulder of lamb (ask the butcher to do this for you)



    A lamb is a sheep that is under 1 year old; between 1 and 2 years old you will find it sold as…

  • 2 tbsp olive or rapeseed oil
    Rapeseed oil

    Rapeseed oil

    If you want a light alternative to other cooking oils, rapeseed is a great choice and has…

  • 1 red onion, chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 2 tsp ground coriander
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp sumac



    This wine-coloured ground spice is one of the most useful but least known and most…

  • 50g fresh breadcrumbs
  • small bunch parsley, chopped



    One of the most ubiquitous herbs in British cookery, parsley is also popular in European and…

  • small bunch mint, chopped, plus a few whole mint leaves to serve



    There are several types of mint, each with its own subtle difference in flavour and appearance.…

  • 85g pistachios, roughly chopped
  • 100g feta, crumbled



    A creamy soft white cheese with an ancient history - nomadic tribes who needed to preserve the…

  • 60g pack dried sour cherries
  • 2 small preserved lemons, rind only, finely chopped
  • 3 tbsp tahini



    Also known as tahina, this finely ground paste of husked and roasted sesame seeds is an…

  • Saffron yogurt, to serve (see tip for recipe)

For the gratin

  • 1 large butternut squash, or 2-3 smaller seasonal squashes like acorn or onion
  • 4 tbsp tahini



    Also known as tahina, this finely ground paste of husked and roasted sesame seeds is an…

  • 100ml double cream
  • 300ml chicken or lamb stock


  1. Remove the lamb from the fridge and allow to come to room temperature while you prepare the stuffing. Heat half the oil in a large frying pan, add the onion and fry for 8-10 mins until starting to turn golden. Add the garlic and spices and cook for 1 min more, then scoop out into a large bowl. Add the breadcrumbs, herbs, pistachios, feta, cherries, lemon and tahini. Season and mix everything together. Unroll the lamb and season well on both sides. Pack the stuffing down the centre of the lamb, pressing to help it stick, then re-roll and tie up with kitchen string (see tip, below left). Flip the lamb over so it is seam-side down, and pack any stuffing that has fallen out back in. Heat oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6.

  2. Now assemble the gratin. Slice the squash in half to separate the thinner top half and the bulbous bottom half. Peel both pieces with either a sturdy peeler or a sharp knife. Cut down the centre of the thinner piece, then slice very thinly into half moons. Halve the bottom piece and scoop out the seeds, then thinly slice this too. Whisk the tahini, cream and stock in a jug with some seasoning. Arrange the sliced squash in a shallow ovenproof baking dish, approximately 22 x 30cm, seasoning well between the layers. Finish with a layer of neatly lined-up half moon slices. Pour over the tahini stock.

  3. Place the lamb on top of the gratin, seam-side down, and rub with the remaining oil. Place in the centre of the oven and roast for 1 hr 20 mins for slightly pink lamb. Lift the lamb off the gratin and transfer to a plate, covered with foil to keep warm, and leave to rest. 4 While the lamb rests, increase oven to 220C/200C fan/gas 7. Spoon any excess fat off the top of the gratin, then return to the oven for 20 mins until golden and crisp. Place the lamb back on top of the gratin to serve, scattered with mint leaves and a pot of Saffron yogurt (see tip, below left) on the side.

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Comments, questions and tips

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13th Jan, 2019
I love Moroccan food so despite this recipe not having many reviews I decided to give it a go. It was truly delicious and not that tricky to make. A very impressive and yummy Sunday lunch - will make again!
philinbrighton's picture
2nd Oct, 2016
So tastey!
philinbrighton's picture
27th Sep, 2015
1 hour 20 mins at 200 seems like a long time. Would the lamb not be better at a slightly lower temp? Also, I can imagine the gratin burning at this temp for this long. Would be tempted to pop the lamb in for 20 minutes then add the squash for the last hour... at at 180c?
1st Apr, 2015
This recipe looks amazing! But I have a leg of lamb instead of a shoulder- does this matter much?
9th Mar, 2015
I would like to cook this on Sunday, but I'm going to be out all of Saturday and Sunday morning. Would it be ok to prepare the stuffing and cut and arrange the squash on Friday, refrigerate and then leave my (not very kitchen proficient) fiance to mix and pour over the stock and pop in the oven? I'm concerned about a) the raw lamb and stuffing together in the fridge for 36 hours and b) whether the squash would oxidise, the way apples do, or go dry. Can anyone recommend any prepare-ahead Sunday lunches?
goodfoodteam's picture
13th Mar, 2015
Hi sam15, thanks for getting in touch. The squash slices should be fine if kept in the fridge in a plastic food bag or in a bowl covered with cling film. With regards to the stuffing - provided the stuffed joint is kept well wrapped in the fridge it should be fine from Friday evening to Sunday morning. 
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