Lamb, Tahini, and Eggs


I can not rave enough about the cookbook Jerusalem. There are no words to do it justice. Everything I have made in it is divine. I love the book! So buy it!

Braised Eggs with Lamb, Tahini and Sumac
from Jerusalem by Yotam Ottelenghi

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 large onion, finely chopped
6 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
10 oz ground lamb
2 teaspoons sumac, plus extra to garnish
1 teaspoon ground cumin
Scant 1/2 cup toasted, unsalted pistachios, coarsely chopped
7 tablespoons toasted pine nuts
2 teaspoons harissa paste
1 tablespoon finely chopped preserved lemon peel
1 1/3 cups cherry tomatoes
1/2 cup chicken stock
4 large free-range eggs
1/4 cup cilantro leaves or 1 tablespoon Zhoug
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Scant 1/2 cup Greek yogurt
1 1/2 tablespoons tahini paste
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 tablespoon water

Heat the olive oil over medium-high heat in a medium, heavy-bottomed frying pan for which you have a tight-fitting lid. Add the onion and garlic and sauté for 6 minutes to soften and color a bit. Raise the heat to high, add the lamb, and brown well, 5 to 6 minutes. Season with the sumac, cumin, 3/4 teaspoon salt, and some black pepper and cook for another minute. Turn off the heat, stir in the nuts, harissa, and preserved lemon and set aside.

While the onion is cooking, heat a separate small cast-iron or other heavy pan over high heat. Once piping hot, add the cherry tomatoes and char for 4 to 6 minutes, tossing them in the pan occasionally, until slightly blackened on the outside. Set aside.

Prepare the yogurt sauce by whisking together all the ingredients with a pinch of salt. It needs to be thick and rich, but you may need to add a splash of water if it is stiff.

You can leave the meat, tomatoes, and sauce at this stage for up to an hour. When you are ready to serve, reheat the meat, add the chicken stock, and bring to a boil. Make 4 small wells in the mix and break an egg into each well. Cover the pan and cook the eggs over low heat for 3 minutes. Place the tomatoes on top, avoiding the yolks, cover again, and cook for 5 minutes, until the egg whites are cooked but the yolks are still runny.

Remove from the heat and dot with dollops of the yogurt sauce, sprinkle with sumac, and finish with the cilantro. Serve at once.


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