Jul 19, 2012

Moroccan Potato, Fennel, and Pea Tajine\Tagine


This tajine is a vegetarian's delight.  All I can say about this one is wow!  I did add a chicken bouillon cube, but it is purely optional.  You can use vegetable stock instead. I found this recipe in the book A Month in Marrakesh by Andy Harris.  However, I added more spices and a tomato to my version.  My neighbor, who is also my taste tester, loved this and asked for the recipe.  What I like about her is that she tells the truth.  If something is not good, she will tell me and then I try to make the recipe better.  I cannot tell you how many times I made a sweet potato pie before the recipe was given her approval.


Ingredients:

2 tbs olive oil
1 onion chopped
4 cloves of garlic, minced
1 tomato, peeled and chopped
2 celery stalks, cut into small slices
1 tsp coriander
1 tsp ginger
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp cumin
1 chicken bouillon cube, optional
1 cup of water
2-3 tbs of Italian parsley and cilantro, or just parsley, or just cilantro
salt/pepper to taste
2-3 tbs ghee or butter or smen for extra flavor and to provide body to the sauce
3-4 medium red potatoes, peeled and cut into quarters
2 fennel bulbs, cut in half and then cut in half again, small quarters
1/2 cup of frozen peas

Heat the olive oil in the bottom of a tajine over medium heat.  Add the onion, parsley, cilantro, tomato, spices, bouillon cube and simmer for about 5 minutes.  Next, add the celery and the fennel.  Cook for about 10 minutes.  Fennel is very dense and takes longer to cook than the potatoes.  Then add the potatoes and butter and sprinkle with salt and pepper.  Simmer on medium heat until the vegetables are tender.  Once done, add the peas and cook an additional 10 minutes or until the peas have plumped up.  If the sauce is too thin, uncover and simmer until the sauce has reduced.  It needs to be somewhat thick. Serve with crispy bread, alone, or over couscous.  Enjoy!

Cooks Note:  The recipe calls for the juice of 1 lemon and 1 1/2 tsp of mint.  I felt that this recipe didn't need anything more.  But feel free to experiment until you find your own special version.