Saturday, March 22, 2014

Beef & veggie tagine

Beef & veggie tagine

Ever since my trip to Marrakech I've been wanting to share this recipe with you. It's really easy (just how I like it) and very tasty. Each time I make it it takes me back to those lovely days with my girls having fun in the sun.

You can use all kinds of veggies: peas, chickpeas, broad beans, carrots, eggplant, courgette, potatoes, paprika etc. But my tagine always includes carrots cause I love the sweetness it adds to the dish.
The original recipe used a fairly large amount of oil (a full cup) but I've cut this back to half a cup to make it a bit leaner.

Don't worry if you don't actually own a tagine, I don't either. All you need is a lidded pot, preferably with a thick bottom.

  • 1 medium onion
  • 1 large tomato 
  • 300 g cubed beef or lamb
  • 600 g veggies 
  • 1/2 tbsp cumin powder
  • 1/2 tbsp paprika powder
  • 1 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1/2 tbsp powdered coriander seed
  • 1/2 tbsp powdered ginger 
  • 1/2 tbsp tomato purée 
  • Pinch of black pepper
  • Salt
  • Olive oil (or another vegetable oil)
  • Cup of water

  1. Wash veggies and cut lengthwise  in like sized pieces so it will cook evenly. 
  2. Chop up onion and sauté in olive oil on medium heat. Add meat, cumin, ginger, paprika, turmeric, coriander powder & black peper and sear on all sides. 
  3. Beef and spices Seared beef Piled veggies
  4. Add the tomato and tomato purée and let it caramelize a bit while occasionally stirring. 
  5. Pour in the water so the meat is neatly submerged. Put the lid on and cook on high heat for 15 minutes. Then reduce heat to a simmer and continue to cook for 45-60 minutes. Stir occasionally and if necessary add some water to keep it from scorching. 
  6. Next add salt to taste and quite literally pile the veggies on top. Start with the firmer veggies like carrots and potatoes then the others like courgette and paprika. You're basically building a little pyramid to steam cook the veggies. 
  7. Add some water so the meat is sort of half submerged. Bring to a boil then reduce heat to a simmer and allow to cook for about 20 minutes. You want to end with cooked veggies that still have a bite to them floating in a nice and thick sauce.

    I served it with a fresh tomato salad, harissa yoghurt, fluffy couscous and some thick bread for dipping up that lovely sauce. Yum yum!
  8. Tomato salad Harissa yoghurt Couscous

Saturday, March 8, 2014

Roasted pepper & tomato soup

Roasted pepper & tomato soup

My mom makes an awesome roasted tomato & pepper soup but I did it the other way around. Why? Because my grocer had an awesome deal on those tiny snack peppers and I didn't know what to do with them anymore. So this was an easy way make something tasty and get rid of them at the same time ;)

I used yellow snack peppers, but basically you can use any sweet pepper except for the green one. They aren't as sweet and make for a icky colored soup. 

My mom uses fresh ones but I went for the easy way and used canned tomatoes. If you do decide to use fresh tomatoes just cut them up and roast them together with the peppers. 

I like adding some macaroni pasta to make it a bit more filling. A sprinkle of fresh basil leaves can be very yummie too. But even without add-ons it's a lovely light soup. 

  • 1 medium onion
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 500 g sweet peppers
  • 300 g canned tomatoes 
  • 600 ml stock
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • Salt
  • Sugar

  1. Preheat oven at 200 C.
  2. Deseed the peppers and cut in half.
    Roughly cut the onion and crush the garlic with the skin.
    Arrange veggies on a baking tray and sprinkle with olive oil. Season with freshly ground pepper and salt.
  3. Place tray in oven and roast for about 15 minutes. Flip and stir veggies and roast for another 15 minutes.
  4. Remove the skin from the garlic and place in a pot together with the tomatoes and stock.
    Bring to a boil and continue cooking at medium heat for about 30 minutes. 
  5. Cut peppers Grilled peppers Add stock to veggies
  6. Now turn of heat and purée soup with a stick blender. 
  7. Next press trough a sieve getting rid of all the leftover chunky or stringy bits. 
  8. Soup purée Press trough sieve Smooth soup
  9. Season to taste with the salt and sugar and serve with a spoon of yoghurt or cream.