Afghani Lamb Spinach Baked Stew

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Afghani Lamb Spinach Baked Stew is a marvelous blend of fresh veggies, olive oil, spices and cardamom, surrounding pieces of lamb so tender they melt in your mouth. It is a true comfort food, that will give your taste buds a delightful experience of a favorite meal enjoyed by people in Afghanistan.

Afghani Lamb Spinach Baked Stew Public Domain

Afghani Lamb Spinach Baked Stew Recipe-

  • 2 to 3 lb. Leg of Lamb meat, chopped into bite-sized chunks
  • 1 large yellow onion, peeled and rough chopped
  • 8 large cloves garlic, peeled and chopped fine
  • 2 tsp. freshly ground turmeric root
  • 1/4 tsp. freshly ground East Indian Spicy Nutmeg
  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. ground cardamom
  • 1 tbsp. crushed red pepper flakes
  • 32 oz. canned whole tomatoes, juices drained off and rough chopped
  • 1 cup lamb broth
  • 1/3 lb. fresh spinach, rinsed well and drained
  • 1/2 cup plain yogurt
  • 1 tbsp. grated lemon peel
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • olive oil
  • 1/4 cup toasted pine nuts, for garnish

It would be good to have: a Dutch Oven

  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. In a Dutch oven, over medium high flame, heat a little olive oil. (Note: if you don’t have a Dutch Oven, you can use a large, deep walled cast iron skillet – and it must have a tight fitting lid)
  3. Sear the lamb, stirring, until nicely browned all over, but not yet cooked all the way through.
  4. Add in the chopped onions; sauté them for about 2 minutes, until fragrant and turning translucent. Then add and stir in the garlic and sauté it for 1 minute more.
  5. Next, add and stir in the nutmeg, cardamom, crushed red pepper, turmeric and cinnamon. Sauté this mixture for about 2 minutes more. You may need to turn down the heat, you do not want to char the garlic or onion.
  6. Now add and stir in the chopped tomatoes and the lamb broth.
  7. Place the lid on the Dutch Oven or skillet, and put it in the oven. Bake for about 1 hour, then do a tenderness test. The meat should be so tender it pulls apart effortlessly with a fork. If necessary, bake a little longer.
  8. Take the dish out of the oven, and then add and stir in the fresh spinach. Keep stirring until the spinach is wilted and thoroughly incorporated into the stew.
  9. Keep the lid off and allow the stew to “set up” and cool down just enough to eat comfortably.
  10. Lastly, add and stir in the lemon zest and the yogurt, and season with salt and pepper to taste.
  11. Serve your Afghani Lamb Spinach Baked Stew while still nice and very warm, garnished with a sprinkling of roasted pine nuts.

Note: For more great dishes from Afghanistan, click here.

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