Lamb with Dried Fruits

Lamb with Dried Fruits
Alan Benson


  • 1/4 Cup  ghee (clarified butter) or oil
  • 35 Ounces  boneless stewing lamb, cut into 3/4-inch cubes
  • onion, chopped
  • 2 Cups  water
  • small cinnamon stick
  • noomi (dried lime), pierced twice with a skewer, or thinly peeled rind of 1/2 lemon
  •   Salt, to taste
  • 1/2 Cup  chopped dates
  • 3/4 Cups  dried apricots
  • 3/4 Cups  chopped pitted prunes
  • 1/4 Cup  sultanas (golden raisins)
  • 2 Tablespoons  brown sugar
  •   Steamed white basmati or long-grain white rice, for serving

When dates are being dried, they exude a thick, molasses-like syrup. The Iraqi cook adds some of this syrup when making this dish, but the addition of brown sugar gives a somewhat similar flavor.

Click here to see The Definitive Guide to Middle Eastern Cooking.


Heat half of the ghee or oil in a large, heavy-based saucepan over medium-high heat and brown the lamb, in batches if necessary.

Return all of the lamb to the pan and push to one side. Add the onion and cook for 5 minutes. Add 1 cup of the water, the cinnamon, and dried lime or lemon rind. Season with salt, to taste, then reduce the heat, cover, and simmer for 45 minutes.

Meanwhile, place the dates in a small saucepan with the remaining water and heat until the dates soften. Press through a sieve to purée.

Add the date purée to the stew with the apricots, prunes, sultanas, and sugar. Stir, then cover tightly and simmer until the lamb is tender, about 1 hour. Check during cooking to ensure the fruit does not stick to the pan, adding a little more water if necessary.

Remove the cinnamon and lime or lemon rind. Serve hot, with a dish of steamed rice.


Calories per serving:

879 calories

Dietary restrictions:

High Fiber Gluten Free, Wheat Free, Egg Free, Peanut Free, Tree Nut Free, Soy Free, Fish Free, Shellfish Free, Alcohol Free, No Oil Added

Daily value:



  • Fat 285g 438%
  • Carbs 305g 102%
  • Saturated 133g 666%
  • Fiber 30g 121%
  • Sugars 232g
  • Monounsaturated 110g
  • Polyunsaturated 21g
  • Protein 176g 352%
  • Cholesterol 856mg 285%
  • Sodium 1,787mg 74%
  • Calcium 469mg 47%
  • Magnesium 391mg 98%
  • Potassium 5,643mg 161%
  • Iron 22mg 122%
  • Zinc 36mg 239%
  • Phosphorus 1,881mg 269%
  • Vitamin A 666µg 74%
  • Vitamin C 32mg 53%
  • Thiamin (B1) 1mg 87%
  • Riboflavin (B2) 3mg 152%
  • Niacin (B3) 67mg 333%
  • Vitamin B6 2mg 114%
  • Folic Acid (B9) 241µg 60%
  • Vitamin B12 23µg 382%
  • Vitamin D 2µg 0%
  • Vitamin E 8mg 42%
  • Vitamin K 127µg 158%
Have a question about nutritional data? Let us know.
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