Moroccan Moment – Tangine Dreamin’

February 3rd, 2011 No Comments Tags: , , , ,

I am Tangine dreaming on this fine winter’s day. I vowed I would move my cheese and try something new to spice things up in my kitchen and gosh darn I did it. I found myself stuck in a rut of sorts making the same stuff and I have pulled myself out in some small way. We picked this Tangine pot up with a gift certificate from Santa and did some culinary culling by trying some new dishes.

Ingredients

2 tbsp olive oil

1 red onion thinly sliced

1 fennel bulb, trimmed, thinly sliced

2 garlic cloves thinly sliced

1.5 lb lamb fillet cut into thick pieces

1 tsp ground ginger

2 tsp ground cumin

2 tsp ground cilantro (coriander)

1/4 tsp cayenne pepper

1/4 tsp salt

1 cup pitted chopped dates

1.5 cups water

Instructions

  • Heat half of the olive oil in the Tangine base on medium heat. Fry the onion, fennel and garlic until they are beginning to brown. Transfer to a plate.
  • Add the remaining oil and heat, then brown the lamb evenly. Then add in all of the spices and cook for one minute.
  • Return the veggies you just cooked to the Tangine base, then add the dates and half of the water. Stir well.
  • Cover and cook gently, stirring occasionally for 3 hours or so. The spices will thicken the liquid as the dish cooks.
  • After half the time elapses add in the remaining water, little by little, if needed.
  • May serve on a bed of rice or couscous.

Commentary

After scanning a few simple recipes for this Moroccan way of cooking I found my spice collection devoid of tumeric and cilantro; however, I did have cumin, marjoram, cinnamon and cayenne pepper. They’re not needed all in one dish mind you, so take heart. Basic recipes have ingredients that I love, such as chic peas, pitted dates, tomatoes, zucchini and trusty, potatos, garlic and onion either meatless or with beef, chicken or lamb. With a few new spices and a mess of fresh ingredients I feel like I’m off to the souk of sorts.

Mmmmm the aroma of this dish with the exotic spices surely fills up my senses on this fine winter’s day as it slow-cooked on my stovetop. I made a whole-grain rice accompaniment and voila dinner-with-a-twist was ready as the bad moon rose.

I love the notion of embracing a new culture and cuisine. It’s enriching trying something new and moving out of your cooking circle of security. This new fangled cooker may just get me organized earlier in the day than usual, and will do the cooking for me as I charged head first into my day.

Anyone for a mint tea or a Belly dancing afterward??

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