I spotted this wonderful merguez sausage (spicy sausage made with lamb) while shopping online and then went looking for some ideas on what to do with it. I found a lamb merguez tagine recipe but I had no squash, no chickpeas and no couscous (also no tagine, but a saucepan fixed that). Time to adapt and improvise! I’m calling it lamb merguez sausage with rice and vegetables.
First I replaced the couscous with rice. Then, instead of squash or zucchini (which I didn’t have, and didn’t think ideal with the lamb anyway) I used the rest of an eggplant I already had at hand. I am a firm believer in using what you have whenever possible (especially with all those steps, I’m not going up and down for one can or two items)!
The result was this delicious lamb merguez sausage with rice and vegetables. It only takes about 35 or 40 minutes to cook. Plus, I reduced the original three pots to only two (one for the rice and another for the lamb and veggies). I wasn’t going to clean three pots! Not to mention, the ingredients are now in the order you use them.
If you’re not familiar with merguez sausage, it’s a bit spicy, but not overwhelmingly so. It’s flavored with chili peppers and cumin, but that’s tempered by the cinnamon, coriander, onions, and garlic, which mellow as you simmer them. The richness of the eggplant and the sweet carrots also make an excellent foil for the spicy lamb.
Lamb Merguez Sausage with Rice and Vegetables Substitutions and Variations
- If you have the chickpeas, add them to the dish
- Or substitute some lentils for the eggplant
- Try it with couscous instead of the rice
- Or serve it over some pasta
- If you can’t find the merguez, you can approximate the flavor by using ground lamb, increasing the garlic, cumin, and coriander and adding some harissa or sriracha or chili garlic sauce for heat
More Lamb and Eggplant Recipes
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Tender lamb, delectable eggplant, and a garlicky aioli sauce. It’s a whole meal in one big bowl. Use leftover roast lamb breast, or start from scratch with a lamb chop.
Not quite what you’d expect from “Jewish food” is it? This stew is rich with saffron, ginger, and raisins. Plus almonds for a bit of crunch. All in one pot too.
Transform a simple Israeli salad into a full meal with pita, rich, “meaty” eggplant, and hummus.