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It is the height of the citrus season here in New Zealand and we usually celebrate our harvests by making some delicious desserts.  Although I did make our favourite orange cake this past week, I also discovered a beautiful cocktail recipe made with blood oranges and a very tasty lamb tagine recipe with lemon.  I thought you may enjoy these two recipes:

Ingredients for Blood Orange Gin Sparkler

Blood Orange Gin Sparkler (click/touch 101 Cookbooks for the original recipe)

You can keep the rosemary simple syrup in the refrigerator for a week or so. You can do this ahead of time. Also, if blood oranges are hard for you to come by – navel oranges are also delicious.

  • 2 cups / 480 ml water
  • 1 cup / 185 grams sugar
  • 4 T (2 sprigs) fresh rosemary leaves
  • 1 bay leaf
  • blood oranges
  • gin
  • ice cubes
  • tonic water

Combine the water, sugar, rosemary, and bay leaf in a small saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a simmer for 3-5 minutes, or long enough for the sugar to dissolve, stirring occasionally. Remove from the heat and let infuse for 10 minutes. Strain into a jar to cool completely.

In the meantime, juice and strain the blood oranges (you’ll need the juice of 4 small oranges for each drink).

To make each drink, you’re going to combine 3 tablespoons / 1 1/2 oz gin, 1-2 teaspoons of the rosemary syrup in each tall glass.  Stir to combine.  Add 3 ice cubes, 3 tablespoons / 1 1/2 oz tonic water and top up with the blood orange juice. Stir again – enjoy!

Prep time: 5 min – Cook time: 10 min


Lamb Tagine with Apricots and Almonds

Serves 4

Prep time 10 – 30 min

Cooking time 1-2 hours

Source of recipe Somerfield

  • 1 lb5 oz/600g lean lamb, diced
  • 2 t/10 ml fresh root ginger, peeled and grated
  • 1/2 t/2.5 ml black pepper
  • 1 garlic clove, peeled and crushed
  • 1 1/2 oz/40 g  butter
  • 1 T/15 ml olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, peeled and chopped
  • 1 t/5 ml gr. coriander
  • 1 t/5 ml gr cumin
  • 1/2 t/2.5 ml gr turmeric
  • 1/2 t/2.5 ml gr cinnamon
  • 1 lemon
  • 4 plum tomatoes, peeled and quartered
  • 5 oz/150 g ready to eat dried apricots
  • 2 T/30 ml honey
  • 1/2 pt/300 ml lamb or beef stock
  • salt and freshly gr black pepper
  • toasted sliced almonds

Place the lamb in a large bowl.  Add the ginger, black pepper and garlic.  Toss to coat evenly and marinate for at least 1 hour, or overnight.

Preheat the oven to 350 F/180C/Gas 4.

Melt 1/2 oz/15 g butter with the olive oil in a large, flame-proof casserole and add the onion.  Stir over a moderate heat for 4-5 minutes, until the onion is softened and lightly browned.

Add the ground coriander, cumin, turmeric and cinnamon.  Stir on the heat for 30 seconds to bring out the flavour.

Pare a long, thin strip of lemon peel, then squeeze the juice from the lemon.  Add the peel and juice to the pan with the tomatoes, apricots, honey and lamb.

Add the stock and stir to mix evenly.  Cover the casserole and cook in the oven for about 1 hour, stirring occasionally, until the lamb is tender.  Adjust the seasoning to taste with salt and pepper.

Garnish with chopped fresh coriander, toasted almond slices and lemon.  Serve with couscous and a green mixed salad.

Do you have favourite citrus recipes that you are willing to share?  Please let us know…..

Until next time,

Your Boomer Life Partners