Cast Iron

Moroccan Beef Stew with Golden Raisins over Whole Wheat Couscous

October 18, 2015
6 Ratings
Photo by Jenya | BlueGalley
  • Serves 4 to 6
Author Notes

I came across a Moroccan beef stew recipe a while ago in Bon Appetit magazine and have been making it ever since. Over the years, I changed and added some spices and also started making it using filet tails. Tenderloin works just fine, but given how expensive it is, I just can't bring to throw my filet mignon into a stew. Filet tails are just as tender and cost a fraction of the price. So if you come across some affordable filet tails, make this delicious, impressive stew! And... it only takes 20 minutes to cook! I love to serve it with some whole wheat couscous for a hearty, but healthy meal. Enjoy! —Jenya | BlueGalley

What You'll Need
  • For the Stew:
  • 1.5 to 2 pounds filet tails or beef tenderloin
  • 2 medium onions
  • 2 large carrots
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 to 3 cups beef broth
  • 1/2 cup pitted kalamata olives
  • 1/2 cup golden raisins
  • 1 can of garbanzo beans, or 15 oz (aka chickpeas)
  • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro
  • 1/4 cup slivered almonds, toasted
  • 3 to 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon hot paprika
  • 1 tablespoon sweet paprika
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1.5 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon finely grated lemon peel
  • pinch hot pepper flakes (or up to 1/8 tsp if you like heat)
  • kosher salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • For the Whole Wheat Couscous
  • 1.5 cups water
  • 1 cup whole wheat couscous (can also use regular)
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  1. Cut the meat into even pieces, about 1 inch wide (it’s ok if they’re not perfect) and season generously with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper. I used about 1 tbs of salt and 1 tsp of pepper. If using regular salt, go lighter on the amount.
  2. Heat half the oil in a large (preferably cast iron) dutch oven over medium high heat until hot but not burning. Brown the meat in batches without over crowding. Make sure the pieces are not touching, or they will steam instead of browning. Remove with slotted spoon and set aside in a plate or dish that will catch the juices. If vegetables are not ready, also remove the pan from heat.
  3. Meanwhile, peel and finely chop the onions and carrots, and finely mince the garlic (I like to use a grater). Heat remaining oil in the pan over medium low heat and add the onions, carrots, garlic and hot pepper if using. Sprinkle the vegetables with a little kosher salt and some pepper. Cook until onions are translucent. DO NOT BURN! And stir often.
  4. Add all the spices (I like to pre-mix mine) to the vegetables and cook stirring for a minute until spices are fragrant.
  5. Add the broth and stir to combine. Chop the olives and add to the pan, along with the raisins, garbanzo beans, almonds and half of the cilantro. Bring to a boil over medium high heat, then lower the heat slightly and simmer for 7 minutes. If you would like more liquid in your stew, you can add some more broth or some water.
  6. Add the beef along with the rendered juices and finely grate the lemon peel and add to the pan. Add the rest of the cilantro and stir everything to combine. Add more salt and pepper if needed.
  7. MAKE THE COUSCOUS: Place 1 1/2 cups of water and 1/4 tsp kosher salt in a saucepan and bring to a boil over high heat. As soon as it boils, add 1 cup of whole wheat couscous. Turn off the heat, cover and let it sit covered for 15 minutes. Uncover, fluff with fork and serve immediately.
  8. And enjoy this easy to make but super impressive exotic stew :)

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • frammelpie
  • Juliebell

3 Reviews

frammelpie November 3, 2022
So just made this tonight. A couple changes, and my son's comment on it:

1. I felt like Moroccan cuisine should have more of a sweet component to it. So I included a 1/2 cup of chopped dates.
3. Skipped step 2.
4. My local Walmart doesn't have either Mignon or the tips, so I used a 2 lb chuck roast. Sorry, I'm white trash because of my small town I live in, that's what I had availabyule (hint: chuck roast worked PERFECTLY if done as below).
5. The recipe doesn't call for cooking the beef completely, for some reason!! It just says to brown it, then remove it from the cooking process to be added right at the end when you're ready to eat. Uhm... so anyway, instead I removed the 2 lbs browned beef to my instant pot and cooked it on high pressure for 45 minutes in 1 cup of the 2-3 cups bouillon broth the recipe calls for. Once it was done, and after straining it and skimming the fat accumulated on the top from the meat, I was left with about 1 cup enhanced beef wonderfulness-broth. I filled the microwave-safe 2-cup container with water and a bouillon cube to provide the rest of the liquid.

Made everything else as-is, and my son's response...well.

"Oh my god... dad. You finally did it. What did I do to deserve this meal?! Did I get a good grade or something?"

Works for me.
frammelpie December 2, 2022
(btw - the 'skipped step 2' is just a tech support joke, sometimes we write that in a ticket that we send to groups just to confuse them slightly - I didn't skip anything)
Juliebell January 17, 2016
Do you think sirloin would work? I never see filet tails. Also we are not big cumin fans so I usually reduce and add some ground coriander. Do you think that would work or alter the flavor profile too much? This looks like a wonderful meal!