As my wife and I seek to eat a bit healthier (New Years’ and all that), I seek ways to add excitement to the dinner table.
Long, long ago, in a four-table restaurant that no longer exists, with a coworker who sadly no longer lives, I had the most amazing dish, called a tangine. With a bit of research and a bit of thought, I can do a similar dish without the specialty cookware or oven. (I do wish had the oven, heavy brick, wood-fired, perfect for bread, pizza, and slow roasting.)
A tajine or tagine is a Berber dish that is named after the earthenware pot in which it is cooked.
The tagine dates back to the time of Harun al-Rashid, the fifth Abbasid Caliph. The earliest writings about the concept of cooking in a tajine appear in the famous One Thousand and One Nights, an Arabic-language story collection from the ninth century.
Today, the cooking-pot and its traditional broth are primarily prepared in the Middle East and North Africa. There are different ways to prepare the tajine. In the original qidra style, saman (clarified butter) is used to lubricate the surface, and a puree of chopped onion is added for flavor and aroma. For muqawlli-style cooking, the ingredients are placed in olive oil to enrich the flavors.
- Tangine or Dutch Oven
Spice Mix (Ras El Hanout)
- 2 tsp Ground Cardamon
- 2 tsp Smoked Paprika
- 2 tsp Ground Ginger
- 2 tsp Mace
- 1 tsp Ground Cinnamon
- 1 tsp Nutmeg
- 1 tsp Tumeric
- 1 tsp Ground Coriander
- 1 tsp Ground Cumin
- 1 tsp Salt
- 1/2 tsp Cayenne
- 1/2 tsp Black pepper Fresh Ground
- 1/2 tsp Ground Anise Seed
- 1/4 tsp Ground Cloves
- 2 tbsp Olive Oil
- 1/2 ea Onion Peeled, rough chop
- 1/2 ea Eggplant Medium, washed chunked to 1" cubes
- 2 ea Potatoes Yukon Gold, peeled, chunked to 1" cubes
- 1 ea carrot peeled chunked to 1" cubes
- 1 cup Kalmata olives pitted
- 1/2 ea Cauliflower Washed, broken to 1' chunks
- 1/2 cup Cooked Chick Peas
- 2 cup Vegetable stock Low Sodium
- 3 cloves Garlic Peeled Crushed
- 1 ea bay leaf
- 1/2 ea Lemon Zested and juiced
- Salt To Taste
- 1 tsp Honey
- Mix all, store in an airtight containter
- Preheat oven to 375
- In a frying pan over medium heat, heat oil to a shimmer
- Add onions and sautee until golden
- Remove onions and reserve
- Add eggplant to frying pan and bronw on all sides
- In a dutch oven, add veggie stock, garlic, 2 tbs spice mix, honey, bay leaf, lemon juice and zest. Bring to a simmer over medium heat until teh honey disolvess
- Add in potato, carrot, olives, eggplant, onions
- Place cauliflower and chick peas on top
- Lid up and bake
- Serve with a crusty sourdough or couscous
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