Wednesday, March 22, 2017

1068. Iraqi Berbine (Purslane) Stew

Berbine (purslane), is usually dismissed as a weed since it has a tendency of growing between your pavement bricks just outside. Iraqis have recognized the deliciousness of this weed and made a stew of that is definitely in my top five favorite stews (it's so hard to pick and choose favorite stews!). We also make a salad from it, but that's for another day insha Allah.
So this stew is a simple tomato based red stew. The lamb shanks are seared after they have been boiling for the better part of an hour, together with ample onion and garlic. The purslane itself lends a flavor rather unique to the dish, something sour, something earthy, something peppery... I can't lay a finger on the perfect word to describe it, but long story short, something special.


500g lamb shanks
3 Tbsp oil
1 large onion, diced
4 cloves garlic, grated
1 cup coriander, chopped
5 cups berbine, chopped
1 Tbsp tomato paste
1 can (400g) crushed tomato
1/2 cup lemon juice
2 tsp salt


Boil the lamb shanks for about an hour. Reserve the meat broth until needed.
In a pot, sear the cooked shanks with the chopped onion until the onion has softened. Stir in the grated garlic and stir until the smell is released. Stir in the roughly chopped coriander and berbine until withered, and then the tomato paste and stir one more minute. Add the crushed tomato, lemon juice, and enough of the reserved meat broth to cover the lot by about an inch.
Bring to a boil, simmer uncovered for another half hour until the stew has thickened slightly and changed to a darker shade of red. Season with salt to taste and serve alongside some steamed rice.

صحة و عافية

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