It’s a date!


It’s a date! If like me, you are new to Dubai then one of the things that will interest you the most is some of the traditional cuisine. A very popular and versatile fruit in the Emirati culture is the date. 

Dates are one of the very best sweet and versatile foods that can regulate the digestive process. It can significantly boost energy levels in people within half an hour of consuming it. The American Cancer Society recommends an intake of 20-35 grams of dietary fiber per day, which can be supplied through dates. It is also said that taking one date per a day will help you to maintain your eye health all your life. They are commonly known to be quite effective in guarding against the problem of night blindness.

What better way to mix sweet and savoury than to add lamb shank to this delectable fruit? I ‘borrowed’ this recipe from a very popular food blogger – Girl Interrupted Eating. The result was everything and more than I could have ever hoped for, my mouth is watering just thinking about it.  The texture was sticky and rich, the flavour was glorious!   I added mashed potatoes but cous cous would also work – Enjoy!

Slow Cooked Spiced Lamb Shanks with Dates

2 Lamb Shanks
2 handfuls of dates cut into quarters
1 pint of water
2 medium onions finely sliced
2 garlic cloves finely chopped
2 tbsp of ras al hanout
1 star anise
2 tbsp of olive oil

  1. Rub the ras al hanout over the lamb shankslamb_dates
  2. Heat the olive oil in a cast iron dish
  3. Brown the lamb on all sides,  add the onions and garlic
  4. Pour over the water and bring to a gentle simmer
  5. Cover and place in a medium oven 180degC for two hours.
  6. If possible leave overnight in the oven and reheat for at least 20 minutes at 180degC
  7. If it is not possible to leave overnight allow to rest for at least 30 minutes before serving

Do you want to read more about health benefits of dates? Here’s an interesting article found on SmartCooky: “10 dates benefits. From improving bone health to promoting beautiful skin.