Lamb Kofta and Preserved Lemon Tagine

This is a wonderful way to enjoy lamb. The spices really lift the dish and the preserved lemon gives a lovely zesty flavour. Enjoy this dish with a dollop of Challon’s Combe natural yoghurt and a baguette from The Bake house Salcombe.


Kofta meatballs

400g minced lamb
1 red onion, peeled and diced
Zest and juice 1 un-waxed lemon, quartered
1 tsp. ground cumin
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
Pinch cayenne pepper
Small bunch flat-leaf parsley, chopped


2 tbsp. olive oil
1 red onion sliced
3cm piece ginger peeled and grated
1 red chilli, chopped (can be omitted if you like it mild or remove the seeds for less fire)
1 preserved lemon sliced
Pinch saffron strands
350ml lamb stock
1 tbsp. tomato purée
100g pitted black kalamata olive
Small bunch coriander, chopped

To Seve

Couscous or fresh crusty bread, and natural yoghurt to serve


  1. Place the lamb, 1 diced onion, spices and parsley in a large bowl and season with sea salt. Mix until well combined and then mould the mixture into firm balls about the size of golf balls.
  2. Soak the saffron in the lamb stock.
  3. Heat the oil in a tagine with a lid (a heavy based braising pot with a lid will be fine if you don’t have a tagine) gently colour the kofta meatballs then remove and reserve until later, saving the fragrant oil for the next step.
  4. Add the onions, ginger and chilli to the tagine and cook for 5 minutes until the onion is softened and starting to colour. Add the tomato puree and fry for 30 seconds before adding the preserved lemon, saffron infused lamb stock and olives. Bring to the boil then turn down to a gentle simmer.
  5. Add the meatballs, one at a time, then reduce the heat, cover with the lid and cook for 20 minutes, turning the meatballs a couple of times.
  6. Remove lid, add the coriander and cook uncovered, for a further 10 minutes until the liquid has reduced and thickened slightly. Serve hot with couscous or fresh crusty bread and cold natural yoghurt.

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