Elk shank tagine

By Derek Dammann
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SERVES
4

Ingredients

BERBERE SPICE

  • 2 tablespoons (30 ml) cumin seed
  • 2 tablespoon (30 ml) coriander seed
  • 1 tablespoon (15 ml) fenugreek seed
  • 1 tablespoon (15 ml) black peppercorns
  • 1 teaspoon (5 ml) cardamom pods
  • 1 tablespoon (15 ml) dried red finger chilies
  • 6 whole cloves
  • 1 cinnamon stick

TAGINE

  • 4 12-ounce (340 g) elk shank pieces
  • 7 1/2 tablespoons (110 ml) berbere spice, divided
  • Salt, to season
  • 1 large cinnamon stick, broken in half
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 5 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
  • 1 tablespoon minced ginger
  • 1½ cups (360 ml) peeled and diced tomatoes
  • 1 cup (240 ml) dried apricots halved
  • 2 tablespoons (30 ml) olive oil
  • 6 cups (1.4 L) beef stock

EQUIPMENT

  • Clay pot with lid, such as a Moroccan tagine

Directions

BERBERE SPICE

  1. Heat a dry pan over medium-high heat, add cumin, coriander, fenugreek, peppercorns, cardamom, chilies, cloves, and cinnamon; tossing continuously for two to three minutes until slightly darkened and aromatic.
  2. Remove toasted spices from the pan to cool. 
  3. Grind toasted spices in a coffee mill or a mortar and pestle to a uniform powder.  Reserve.

ELK

  1. Soak clay pot in cool water for 10 - 15 minutes.
  2. Season the elk shanks with salt, half the Berbere spices and rub with olive oil.
  3. Arrange cinnamon sticks, onion, garlic cloves, ginger, apricots, and tomatoes in the clay pot.
  4. Add seasoned elk shanks, salt and the second half of the Berbere spice.
  5. Add beef stock, cover and place in a cold oven, set the temperature for 325 F (160 C), and bake for four hours, allowing the clay pot and its contents to come to heat together.
  6. Remove the pot's cover and turn oven to 400 F (205 C).
  7. Bake for 15 minutes to brown, then serve.

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