Season flanken with salt and pepper, and briefly set aside. Drizzle a little oil into a large, oven-safe pot, enough to lightly coat the entire bottom. Set the pot over medium heat. When the oil is hot, toss in meat, browning it in batches to avoid crowding and steaming the meat. Once each piece is browned, remove to a plate and set aside.
Next, saut onions in same oil used to brown the meat. When onions are soft, return meat to the pot. Cover, and cook for about 1 hour over very low heat.
Pour the boiling water over the apricots and let soak 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 300. Once the meat has cooked for at least 1 hour, add the apricots with their soaking liquid, along with the prunes, carrots, sweet potatoes (or squash), lemon juice, zest, ginger, and cinnamon. Replace the cover and place in the oven 2 to 3 hours. Check occasionally to make sure the stew doesn't get too dry. Add more water if needed. Stew is done when the meat and vegetables are fork-soft.
Towards the end of the cooking time, remove the cover so the top browns and caramelizes. To serve, scoop out the meat and vegetables, then drizzle generously with the fragrant sauce. Will keep refrigerated at least one week. Enjoy!