Lamb with Aubergines

  • 900g/2lb lamb neck fillet
  • 2 hot red chillies
  • 675g/11/2lb onions
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 5cm/2in piece of root ginger
  • 1 tbsp dried oregano
  • 10 rosemary leaves
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 150ml/5fl oz olive oil
  • 3 sweet red peppers
  • 225g/8oz potatoes
  • 450g/1lb small aubergines
  • 450g/1lb tinned chopped tomatoes
  • Salt and pepper
  • Handful of coriander leaves
  • Handful of flat-leaf parsley leaves

1. At least 5-6 hours before serving: cut the lamb into 5cm/2in cubes and put into a bowl. Deseed the chillies, cut the flesh into thin strips and scatter them over the lamb. Peel and thinly slice the onions. Peel the garlic and cut into paper-thin slices. Peel the ginger and cut it into julienne strips. Sprinkle all these over, together with the oregano, rosemary leaves and crumbled bay leaf. Grind about 1tsp of black pepper over all. pour over the olive oil and turn to coat and mix. Cover the bowl with clingfilm and leave to marinate at room temperature for 3 hours. You can prepare the dish to this point and refrigerate it for up to 24 hours but, if you do, remember to bring it to room temperature at least 2 hours before cooking because the olive oil will set in the refrigerator and not work as an effective marinade.)

2. When ready to cook: preheat the oven to 200C/400F/Gas 6. Char the peppers over an open flame until blistered, then put in a covered bowl for the skins to steam loose. Peel, deseed and cut the flesh into strips. Add to the meat.

3. Peel and cut the potatoes into 2.5cm/1in cubes. Cut the aubergine into cubes the same size. Stir the potato and aubergine cubes into the meat together with the chopped tomatoes with their liquid. Season with slat. Transfer to a casserole into which all the ingredients will just fit and cover with the lid. bake for 30 minutes, then lower the temperature to 160C/325F/Gas 3 and continue to cook for a further 11/2 hours, checking from time to time that it is not drying out. If it does, add a ladleful of water, but this should not be necessary.

4. Remove from the oven and try a piece of the meat. it should be meltingly tender and moist. If necessary, cook a little longer and add more salt if you think it needs it. Serve in bowls, scattered with whole coriander and parsley leaves.

Serves 4

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