Today’s Pieday Friday is something that I cooked up this week after being inspired by my cat’s food. No wait, don’t go – I know that sounds icky but I can explain! It’s still a human recipe, made with real people food, and it’s definitely a delicious and nutritious meal. The only difference is that I thought up the recipe while daydreaming in the kitchen after my eye wandered to the cat bowl… You see, my beautiful cats Cookie and Muffin have just tried out some Wainwrights dry cat food and the combinations of flavours are just so, well, human. There’s turkey and rice (are you thinking about turkey risotto already?!), salmon with sweet potato, and – the one my cats are currently enjoying – lamb and brown rice. It made me remember how much I love brown rice, even though I’ve not eaten it for years, so I decided to create a Moroccan-inspired spiced lamb recipe to go with a tasty vegetable-jewelled rice.Just to repeat, it’s a human recipe that I enjoy and absolutely is NOT for your pets because it contains onions and garlic and all those yummy things that we love but that animals will get VERY ILL if they eat it, so please please don’t feed this to your animals, only to your human family!Ingredients (serves 4 humans): 500g minced lamb, 2 cloves garlic, tablespoon of tomato puree, 2 tsp cumin, 2 tsp paprika, 2 tsp turmeric, 2 tsp chilli powder (or one small chilli, finely chopped), 2 red onions, 1 white onion, 1 tin of chopped tomatoes, handful sultanas, vegetable stock cube, 2 handfuls of red lentils, 4 portions of brown rice, 2 fresh tomatoes, 1 yellow pepper, 6 rehydrated dried apricots, fresh chives, balsamic vinegar, 200g low-fat plain yoghurt, fresh mint, finely diced cucumber.
- Cook the lamb mince in a large non-stick saucepan and once it has browned off add the diced white onion and one diced red onion and cook for a few minutes to allow the onions to soften.
- Stir in the spices, garlic, tomato puree and stock cube and cook for a minute before adding the tin of tomatoes, lentils and sultanas.
- Cover with a lid and pop it in the oven at 150 degrees to simmer in the pan for 30 minutes – the longer you leave it, the better the flavours will be. I used my slow-cooker to cook it through on the low setting.
- Put the brown rice on to boil. Meanwhile, scoop the seeds out of the fresh tomatoes and finely dice the flesh, chop the apricots, finely dice the last red onion and yellow pepper, and mix all the ingredients together with the chopped chives and a splash of balsamic vinegar. These will be the ‘jewels’ in your brown rice, so mix it through once the rice is cooked.
- Mix the yoghurt with the finely diced cucumber and roughly chopped fresh mint to create a cooling dip to accompany the dish. Season with salt and pepper to taste.Let me know what you think of this recipe if you give it a go and tweet me your photos @Cassiefairy.