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  • Writer's pictureNava

Mediterranean Beef stew with dates and lime juice.

When I think of this dish I think of the song by Tina Turner, “you’re simply the BEST, you’re better than all the rest, you’re better than any stew, any stew I’ve ever had.”

This last line really sums this stew up because this stew has been kissed and blessed by the spice god, the flavours complement each other perfectly. If I were to add a touch more or a pinch less it would be too much or too little. In other words don’t mess with my recipe (hey did I just say that or is my mum in the room… don’t answer that) This stew is perfection. Melt in your mouth meat, packed with flavour, with the perfect balance of sweet and savoury. You can eat it with plain rice, yellow rice, couscous (check out my couscous recipe, it’s heavenly) or with some bread.

I eat it with caramelised onions, tahini and (depending on my mood) rice, couscous or some homemade bread.

However, you choose to eat it, it won’t disappoint because this stew is sublime.


750g beef chuck, diced

2 large purple onions sliced

11 dried dates

6 tablespoons oil

1 chicken stock cube, dissolved in 2 cups of hot water

1 teaspoon mixed spice

1 teaspoon ground cumin

½ teaspoon ground cinnamon

¼ teaspoon ground cardamom

5 tablespoons (75mls) freshly squeezed lime juice

Salt and black pepper to taste

Hand full of mint, chopped (leaves only)

A bunch of coriander, chopped (leaves only)

Yellow rice: 2 cups rice, ½ teaspoon of turmeric

Caramelised onion: 2 large purple onions and 4 tablespoons of oil


Place 3 tablespoons of oil in a casserole pot on medium to high heat, add the beef and Brown beef all over, no more than two minutes each side. Remove from pot and set aside.

Cook the sliced onions with 3 tablespoons of oil on medium heat for 2 minutes, then reduce heat to medium- low and cook for about 7-8 min, stirring occasionally, until super soft (Deglaze pot with 2 tablespoon of water if you need to).

Stir in the spices, return browned meat to the pot, stir in dates and give it another good stir.

Add the stock dissolved in water, bring to the boil on high heat, then add lime juice.

Reduce heat to low and let it simmer with lid on for an hour, stirring occasionally.

Add mint and coriander and cook for another hour, stirring occasionally or until meat is soft and tender.

Serve with yellow rice, couscous or bread.

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