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Recipe

Slow-Cooker Lamb Shawarma

Servings: 8

Though true shawarma is made with shaved meat cooked slowly on a spit, meat cooked in a slow cooker produces a similarly tender texture, and its full, fragrant flavor will sway even those who think they don’t like lamb. This recipe makes enough for eight wraps, but you can make fewer and freeze the leftover meat for future good eating. You can find the spice mix ras el hanout as well as pomegranate molasses in some large supermarkets and in Middle Eastern markets.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups lower-salt beef broth
  • 1 14.5-oz. can crushed tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 Tbs. pomegranate molasses
  • 2 Tbs. finely chopped garlic
  • 1 Tbs. ras el hanout
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 3- to 3-1/2-lb. boneless leg of lamb, trimmed and cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 1 Tbs. olive oil
  • 1/2 medium head purple cabbage, thinly sliced (5 to 6 cups)
  • 1 Tbs. balsamic vinegar
  • 8 large sandwich wraps, warmed and lightly charred, if you like
  • 1/2 sweet onion, thinly sliced lengthwise (about 1 cup)
  • 1 cup homemade or purchased tzatziki sauce
  • 1 cup coarsely chopped fresh tender herbs, such as mint, cilantro, and parsley

Preparation

  • In a 6- to 8-quart slow cooker, combine the broth, tomatoes, 1 cup of water, 1/4 cup of
    the molasses, the garlic, ras el hanout, 1 tsp. salt, and 1/2 tsp. pepper. Add the lamb and cook on high for 5 hours or low for 6 hours.
  • Using a slotted spoon, transfer the lamb to a cutting board. Transfer the liquid to a large dutch oven or similar pot, and bring to a vigorous boil. Cook the sauce, skimming the fat, until reduced by half, about 15 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, in a large skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat until shimmering. add the cabbage, the remaining 2 Tbs. molasses, the vinegar, 1/2 tsp. salt, and 1/4 tsp. pepper, and toss to coat. Reduce the heat to medium, cover, and cook until the thicker pieces are crisp-tender, 8 to 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, shred the lamb, add it to the sauce, and keep warm.

To serve, use a slotted spoon to place about 1/2 cup of the shredded lamb on one side of one sandwich wrap, top with some of the onion, a generous dollop of the tzatziki, some chopped herbs, and some of the cabbage mixture. Roll to create a burrito-style wrap. Slice on the diagonal and serve.

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