Traditionally used by nomads as portable ovens , a tagine is made from glazed earthenware with a conical lid. As with a casserole the base is both a cooking and serving dish.. The cone shaped cover acts like an oven and the entire lid is totally sealed to retain heat and moisture, which not only prevents it from drying out during the long cooking process, but also allows the slow infusion of flavors throughout the dish. The low, indirect heat produces a rich, aromatic flavour as the food slowly simmers for several hours.
Dried fruits are usually added while cooking which brings out a subtle sweetness to the flavour. Often tagines contain preserved or salted lemons. I used tomatoes and didn't think I needed another souring agent .
This was my first attempt cooking in a tagine and the end result was superb . I guess with everything stewing gently in their own juices over low heat one can hardly go wrong !
3 Tablespoons Olive Oil.
4 Medium Sized Potatoes ( peeled and cut into fingers )
2 Red Peepers ( Seeds removed and cut roughly into an inch and a half chunks )
2 Yellow Peppers ( as with the red )
4 Large Red Tomatoes ( seeds removed and cut as the peppers )
8-10 Shallots ( left whole )
6 Cloves Of Garlic ( Minced roughly )
1 Large Zucchini ( cut into thick discs )
1 Tablespoon Zathar Powder
150 Ml Water
6 Seedless Dates ( Cut into 4 pieces )
Fresh Coriander Sprigs .
60 Ml Red Wine .
Saute all the vegetables for 5 minutes over high heat and then transfer into the tagging base along with the water . Cover the tagine and place in a hot oven , cook 30 minutes ate 200C and another 30 minutes at 160 . Check towards the end and adjust flavors .
That simple and you get to use almost any raw vegetable you have left over in your fridge ! Serve with rice or on its own .
Healthy , effortless and amazingly tasty .
Some tagines can be used on a flame using a diffuser . If you don't have a tagine a casserole with a tightly fitted lid will do the trick !
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