Archive | June, 2011

Chicken tagine with caramelised onions and honey

27 Jun

Sweetly caramelised onions and tender chicken chunks, with small crunchy flecks of sesame seeds. No couscous tonight, simply served with bread.

Onion was softened for ten minutes whilst I cried over the shallots, trying to get them to part with their skins! Chicken was added to the soft onions, with ginger, saffron and cinnamon. Once browned a small amount of water was added and in went the shallots. 25 minutes of cooking with the lid on cooked the chicken and prepared the onions for carmelising.

I extricated the chicken and stirred honey into the onions.  20 minutes later they were gorgeously browned with a thick rich sauce. Chicken back in to warm through with plenty of seasoning. 

Mr M enjoyed this and gave it a generous 8.

No blog for last night’s dinner, slow roasted lamb (in wine) with couscous. Bit of an improvised tea, so not really one for sharing..

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Cod with Chermoula on oven cooked potatoes and tomatoes

25 Jun

Finally a blog for a meal I have just eaten, must be the weekend!

Cod was marinaded in a Chermoula sauce (coriander, garlic, paprika, chilli, cumin, lemon juice and olive oil) for half an hour.

Meanwhile new potatoes were sliced thinly, mixed with thinly sliced tomatoes, dressed in oil and salt, then roasted for 30 minutes.

The cod and marinade were placed on top of the potatoes, cooked for 15 minutes and served with some leftover veg tagine.

The marinade imparted freshness to the tender flakes of fish, complemented by waxy, salty potatoes and tangy tomatoes. 8 out of 10.

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Fish in a red pepper sauce

25 Jun

A simple dinner, this was really packed with flavour and easy to do.

Peppers were roasted in a hot oven. Once charred, we peeled them. The peppers were pulverised with garlic, oil, vinegar and seasoning? This was drizzled over some oven poached fish.

Just 6.5 from Mr M, perhaps not one to make again.

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Catching up again, Chicken and date Tagine

25 Jun

As lamb supplies from the freezer start to run low, we opted for a chicken dish from Arabesque.

We speeded up the cooking process by cutting the chicken into small pieces. The onion was softened for ten minutes, with the usual cinnamon, ginger and saffron. Some water with the chicken to let it cook and absorb the flavours for half an hour. Then reduced with a little honey and a large handful of dates, the resulting sauce was thick.

Served up with some couscous and sprinkled with almonds this was a tasty tea, the chicken contrasted beautifully with the sticky dates.  8 says Mr M.

The next day Mr M dished up a vegetable tagine, no specific post for this one as it’s a repeat.

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Catch up posts, Mansaf (yoghurt soup) and Lamb Tagine with Chestnuts.

19 Jun

A delicious waft of roasting lamb is currently assaulting my nostrils, Mr M is making lamb with couscous and a date/almond stuffing.

Back to the topics of this blog. As the meat cigars only called for half a pack of mince Mr M industriously made the remainder into kifte (small meatballs).  Flavoured with garlic and cumin they were the meat element of the mansaf I made the next day. This was a departure from our Moroccan theme, according to our Moro cookbook its Jordanian, but very nice too. The meatballs are lightly browned with onions, then lots of almonds and pine nuts are toasted. The liquid of. The soup is stock, heavily flavoured with saffron. At the end of cooking yogurt (with egg and cornflour to stabilise it) is added.

The result is a flavour packed, creamy soup. 8 we agreed.

Next day. We are almost out of lamb, but Mr M diced a half shoulder to provide the meat for our tagine with chestnuts. Pretty similar to the other lamb ravines we have made, tender slow cooked lamb, flavoured with cinnamon, ginger and saffron. We added a few prunes to help goo out the sauce.  The chestnuts added a smokiness and a pleasant textural contrast to the melting lamb.  Another 8 we think.

No pics at present, phone is hiding them in its unique fashion…

Meat cigars with carrot salad

15 Jun

Today a pack of beef mince was split between meat cigars for today and mini meatballs for tomorrow.

The beef mince was fried with a finely chopped onion and some  cinnamon and ginger. When browned parsley,  coriander and a couple of eggs were thrown in and mixed in.

This filling went, teaspoonful at a time onto fill pastry and rolled into cigar shapes. This made a dozen cigars which baked in a hot oven for 20 minutes.

Meanwhile carrots were chopped into sticks and boiled then fried in olive oil with ground cumin and garlic.

Pretty easy to put together and tasty too. Mrs M scored it 8 out of 10.

Mr M

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Chicken tagine with olives and lemon and a side of sweet potato salad

13 Jun

This was super tangy due to the addition of plenty of preserved lemon.

For the sweet potato salad, sweet potatoes were boiled with softened onions, cumin until soft. Olives, preserved lemon and coriander were added to serve.

The chicken tagine was softened onions, garlic, Saffron, ginger and chicken cooked in a little water. Once the chicken was cooked, the sauce was reduced, lemon juice and preserved lemon and olives were added.  Mr M voted 7.5 for the dish, not one to make again methinks.

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Lamb Tagine with prunes and almonds

13 Jun

So last week was bad for blogging. No Moroccan food at the weekend and just 2 days during the week (well 3 if you include the leftovers of this we ate on Fri).

This was a really yummy dish with an unctuous sauce from the reduced prunes.  Lamb shanks were slow cooked in a broth with cinnamon and ginger for a couple of hours. Then prunes and a little honey were bubbled into the sauce.  It was garnished with almonds and served with Couscous. 8.5 a good effort 🙂

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Lamb with Couscous raisins and onions

6 Jun

A slight variation on the recipe given by Claudia, as I had some tasty little cutlets for my solo dinner that it seemed a shame not to roast. So I flavoured them with cinnamon, ginger and a clove on each chop. I also added some diced shallots.

I also made the couscous with extra care. Measuring the water, waiting ten minutes, adding a little oil, then fluffing with my finger tips.  Ten minutes before serving it went in the oven to get steamy hot. Then butter was melted through and the grains refluffed. Definitely worth it, so much better than the usual claggy mush.

I followed the recipe to make the caramelised onion and raising topping.  Onions were boiled for 20 minutes, until no liquid was left, then butter was mixed in until they were golden.  Finally soaked raisins and honey were added and caramelised to make a tasty sweet topping that I slathered over the chops and couscous. I give it an 8!

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Lamb Tagine with Apricots

3 Jun

This was very rich. Partly due to the slow cooked lamb shoulder chunks and partly due to the soaked dried apricots coated in honey and butter.

Mr M kindly diced up half a lamb shoulder and browned it in a little oil. I added some chopped onion and water and let it simmer for an hour or so.  Just a few teaspoons of cinnamon and ginger flavoured the meat.  After simmering gently for an hour, I took the lid off and increased the heat until the brothers was reduced to a rich sauce.

I soaked apricots for half an hour then boiled them for another half an hour before coating them in honey and butter. I let them get hot and sticky,  and slightly caramelised. They smelt amazing!  Reminded me of Greek kitchens of my Mum’s cousins, I guess they used a lot of honey and butter to male things taste good!

Apricots and almonds were scattered over the meat before serving with some pitta bread.  According to Claudia Roden, Moroccan’s tend to have bread with a tagine and not couscous, we didn’t have any proper bread but the pitta was nice. Mr M voted 7.5 out of 10, I agree for once.  This was nice, but not amazing, it could have done with more flavour and I found the whole thing a little oily.  Our lamb was tender, but a bit fatty!

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