Morrocan Spiced Oranges

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This is a very refreshing dessert. That is so cooling. This dessert doesn’t just compliment Moroccan dishes, it’s also a perfect ending to a rich and heavy meal such as roast and stews.

KITCHEN KIT:
A medium size bowl.

Ingredients:
1. 1 tsp. Orange Flower Blossom (key ingredient for this dessert)
2. 1/4 tsp. Cinnamon powder
3. 1/4 tsp. Water
4. 1/2 tsp. Golden Caster Sugar
5. 4 Oranges, peeled and sliced
6. Fresh Mint leaves, torn into pieces

The Orange Dessert:
1. Place the slice oranges in a bowl, combine all the ingredients listed above and mix them all well.
2. Place the oranges on a plate, cover with a clingfilm and place in the fridge for at least an hour.
3. Finally sprinkle over some torn mint leaves over the oranges before serving.
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Vegetable Tagine

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This is such an easy dish to prepare so please do not be put off with the length of this recipe. Getting all the spices out is the hardest part of this recipe and trying to remember if I have already put every single one of them in! The cooking part on the other hand is super easy. There are days when I feel I’ve had far too many brownies in one day. I’d feel so guilty and decide to have a vegetarian evening. This is what I usually make in one of those evenings!

KITCHEN KIT:
Tagine, baking tray and a large pan.

Ingredients Serves 4:

For the Roasting:
Spices and Seasoning:
1. 1/2 tsp. Cumin Powder
2. 1/2 tsp. Paprika
3. 1/2 tsp. Ground Cinnamon
4. 1/2 tsp. Ground Coriander
5. 1/2 tsp. Salt
6. 1/2 tsp. Sugar
7. 1/2 tsp. Ground Black Pepper
8. 1/4 tsp. Dried Chilli Flakes

The Vegetables:
9. 1 Aubergine, chopped into large chunks
10. 1 Red Onion, quartered
11. 3 Bell Peppers, deseeded and chopped into large chunks
12. 1 Parsnip, peeled and chopped into large chunks
13. 1 Carrot, peeled and chopped into large chunks
14. 4 tbsp. Olive Oil

For the Frying:
Spices, Seasoning and Fruit:
15. 1/2 tsp. Ground Cinnamon
16. 1/2 tsp. Ground Ginger Powder
17. 1/2 tsp. Dried Parsley
18. 1/2 tsp. Ground Cumin
19. 1/2 tsp. Paprika Powder
20. 1/2 tsp. Ground Coriander
21. 1/2 tsp. Salt
22. 1/4 tsp. Ground Black Pepper
23. 1/4 tsp. Dried Chilli Flakes
24. 3 tbsp. Olive oil
25. 2 tbsp. Runny Honey
26. 70g. Dried Apricots

For the Couscous:
27. 150 g. Couscous
28. 300 ml. Vegetable Stock
29. 15g. Raisins
30. A handful of Coriander leaves, roughly chopped
31. A handful of Almond flakes (approx.5g.)

For the Roasting:
1. Pre-heat the oven to 200 degrees.
2. Place all the ‘Roasting Ingredients’ listed above- the spices, the seasoning and the vegetables all in a baking tray. Mix them well to make sure the vegetables are nicely coated with the spices and oil.  Roast in the oven for 45 minutes, stir the vegetables half way through the cooking time.(a bit less if you have very ripe vegetables.)
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For the Frying:
3. Place a large pan on a medium heat, add the oil, spices and seasoning. Stir for a minute and then add the honey, followed by the roasted vegetables and their juices. Stir well for 1-2 minutes making sure that the honey coats all the vegetables. Finally stir the apricots in.
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For the Couscous:
4. Place the couscous in tagine and add the hot water. Stir in the raisins and cover the tagine for 5 minutes. After 5 minutes, sprinkle over the chopped coriander leaves and almond flakes on top of the couscous.

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Serve the couscous with the roasted vegetables.

Jerk Chicken with Spicy Coconut Rice

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Although this recipe involves a long list of spices, please don’t be put off making this dish.  It is in fact a very easy dish to make. Measuring and mixing the spices all together is the most time consuming part for this dish.  What I have also recently done is have all the dry spices all measured up and stored in a few small containers. That way, whenever I fancy making this dish, it is a matter of simply adding the liquid ingredients into the spice mix, rub it all to the chicken pieces, leave to marinade for a couple of hours, grill and done. A super easy evening dinner or a weekend lunch!

KITCHEN KIT:
A grinder or pestle and mortar, 2 ovenproof dishes, a cling film, 2 sauce pans with a lid and a rubber glove.

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Ingredients:

For the Jerk Chicken:
1. 3 tbsp. olive oil
2. 4 chicken thighs, skin on
3. ½ tbsp. Allspice powder
4. ½ tbsp. ground black peppercorns
5. ½ tbsp. dried chilli flakes
6. ¼ tsp. salt
7. 1 tsp. muscovado sugar
8. 1 tbsp. runny honey
9. 25g.fresh flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
10. 25g.fresh coriander leaves, finely chopped
11. 2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped or grated
12. 1 tsp. ginger powder
13. 3 spring onions, finely chopped
14. 1 lime juice and zest
15. 1 scotch bonnet chilli, deseeded and finely chopped (traditionally this is added but if you are not keen on spicy food you can omit this)

For the Spicy Coconut Rice:
16. 2 tbsp. vegetable oil
17. 1/2 onion, finely chopped
18. 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped or grated
19. 410g. long-grain rice
20. ½ tsp. salt
21. 2 pinches of ground black pepper
22. ½ tsp. cayenne pepper
23. ½ tsp. ginger powder
24. 400 ml. chicken stock
25. 400 ml. coconut milk
26. 400g. or 1 tin of Kidney beans, rinsed and drained
27. 1 tsp. thyme leaves
28. 1 whole Scotch bonnet chilli (left whole)

For the Corn:
29. 2 cobs
30. 1 tbsp. lime
31. A pinch of salt
32. A pinch of ground black pepper
33. A pinch of chilli flakes
34. 3 tbsp. butter, melted

For the Jerk Chicken:
1. Spoon over 3 tbsp. of olive oil in an ovenproof dish, place the chicken thighs skin side down first.
2. Next, place the rest of the ingredients listed on the above ‘Jerk Chicken’ recipe in a spice grinder or pestle and mortar, ground or pound all the ingredients for 2-3 minutes until well combined. Then rub this all over the chicken, if you are using Scotch bonnet chili wear a rubber gloves to handle the chili.

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3. Cover the chicken with a cling film and leave to marinate in the fridge for at least 2 hours, preferably overnight.
4. Next, pre-heat oven to 200°C. place the chicken and bake for 30 minutes, turning the chicken a few times to cook well on all sides. After 30 minutes turn the oven to ‘GRILL’ turn the chicken skin side up and finish them off to grill for 5 minutes to get the skin charred.

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For the Spicy Coconut Rice:
5. Place your sauce pan over a medium heat, add the onion, garlic and thyme, fry for 2 minutes, then add the rice and fry for 1 minute.

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6. Stir the rest of the ingredients listed on the above ‘Spicy Coconut Rice’ recipe. Cover the pan with a lid, reduce the heat to low and allow simmering for 25 minutes until the rice is cooked (check the rice occasionally).

For the Corn:
7. In a small bowl, combine the lime, salt, pepper, chili flakes and melted butter; then set aside your spiced butter mixture.
8. Place your saucepan over a medium heat, add 2 litres of water and bring it to the boil.
9. Once the water is boiling add the corncobs and boil for 10 minutes.
10. Place the corn cobs in an oven proof dish and finish cooking in the oven under the grill for 5 minutes, your corn and your chicken should be grilled in the oven to both finish cooking at the same time.
11. Removed the cooked corn from the oven and brush with the spiced butter mixture all over.

Serve immediately.

Mediterranean Vegetable Cous Cous

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This is such an easy dish to prepare and perfect for a dinner party as you can do all the preparation work in advance. Although I prefer this warm you can also serve this dish cold.  If you are not too keen on feta cheese you can use other types of cheese such as  goats cheese or even brie.

KITCHEN KIT:
A heatproof bowl, a grater for the lemon zest and a roasting tin.

Ingredients Serves 6:

The cous cous:
1.  250g. couscous
2.  Zest and juice of 1 lemon
3.  600ml. vegetable stock

The cooked vegetables:
4.  3 tbsp. olive oil
5.  3 red bell peppers, deseeded and cut into chunks
6.  2 aubergines, sliced diagonally
7.  2 courgettes, sliced diagonally
8.  ½ red onion, sliced thinly
9.  ½ tsp. freshly ground black pepper
10. ½ tsp. salt
11. 1 tsp. dried parsley
12. 1 tsp. dried coriander
13. 1 tsp. cumin powder (or cumin seeds pounded)

The rest of the ingredients:
14. 25 pieces of green olives, pitted and halves
15. 6 cherry tomatoes, quartered
16. 100g feta cheese, crumbled into chunks
17. A handful of chopped fresh flat leaf parsley

 

The cous cous:
1.  Place the couscous into a large salad bowl and pour over the hot vegetable stock. Stir in the lemon zest and then cover the bowl with a plate, leaving the cous cous to soak for 15 minutes.

The cook vegetables:
2.  Pre-heat the oven to 200ºC. On a roasting tin mix all the ‘cooked vegetables’ ingredients listed above and bake for 45 minutes turning over the vegetables occasionally during the cooking process.

The rest of the ingredients:
3.  Next, add all the ‘rest of the ingredients’ listed above into your cous cous and mix in the cooked vegetables.

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Serve warm or cold.

Spiced Courgette

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This recipe is inspired from my recent trip to Israel where I discovered so many amazing vegetable dishes; such as this courgette lightly coated in olive oil, mixed with exotic herbs and spices, cooked simply in a ‘Tanur clay oven’ or lightly pan fried. Most restaurants will serve this as a starter, accompanied with a flat bread or matza and some wonderful hummus. This is an excellent dish to have as a starter or as a side dish and if you are not keen on courgettes you can alternatively use aubergines, bell pepper or other types of vegetables instead of courgettes. instead. It will tastes just as good!

KITCHEN KIT:
Roasting tin

Ingredients:
1. 1 Courgette, finely sliced approx. ½ inch in thickness (can be peeled or unpeeled)
2. 2 tbsp. olive oil
3. ½ tsp. dried parsley
4. ½ tsp. dried coriander
5. ½ tsp. ground black pepper
6. ½ tsp. cumin powder (or cumin seeds pounded)

The Spiced Courgette:
1. Preheat the oven to 200ºC. Meanwhile, in a roasting tin; rub the sliced courgettes with the olive oil and all the herbs and spices.
2. Place in the oven to bake for 35 minutes.

Serve immediately.

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Moroccan Chicken Tagine

KITCHEN KIT:
Deep dish, Casserole pan with a lid and Tagine dish/ovenproof dish.
Ingredients Serves 2:
The Marinade:
1. 2 tbsp. Olive oil
2. 3 Garlic cloves grated or crushed
3. 1 tsp Harrisa paste
4. ¼ tsp Ginger powder
5. ¼ tsp Paprika powder
6. ¼ tsp Cumin seeds, pounded
7. ¼ tsp Turmeric powder
8. Pinch of cinnamon
9. Pinch of salt
10. Pinch of ground white pepper

For Chicken Tagine:
11. 2 Large chicken legs on the bone and skin on
12. 4 tbsp Olive oil
13. 1 Onion, chopped
14. 1 Carrot, peeled and chopped into chunks (½ inch thick)
15. 1 Courgette, peeled and chopped into chunks (½ inch thick)
16. ½ Litre of chicken stock
17. A few saffron strands
18. 4 Small preserved lemons
19. 90g Green pitted olives
20. A handful of coriander, chopped

The Marinade:
1. In a deep dish, combine all the marinade ingredients together. Cover the chicken with the marinade and leave to marinade for at least 1 hour, preferably overnight.

For the Chicken Tagine:
2. In a casserole pan over high heat, add 4 tbsp. of olive oil. Once the oil is smoking hot, add the chicken legs. Cook and brown the chicken on all sides for 3-4 minutes.


3.  Add onions and sauté for 2 minutes or until onions turn translucent. Add the carrots, ½ litre of chicken stock, saffron strands, a pinch of salt and pepper. Cover with a lid and simmer for 10-15 minutes.


4.  Add the courgettes, preserved lemons and olives and cook for a further 8 minutes. Finally garnish with some coriander leaves.

Serve immediately with warm Couscous.




Moroccan Kefta Tagine (Kefta Mkaouara)

Moroccan Kefta Tagine

KITCHEN KIT:
Tagine dish/ovenproof dish, sauce pan and a frying pan.

Ingredients Serves 2:

For the Meatballs:
1.  500g minced beef (alternatives: 250g minced beef and 250g minced lamb) although pork is never used for this dish or any Moroccan cuisine, for Cantonese who loves pork you can use 250g mince beef and 250g minced pork, I have tried this dish with both beef and lamb and beef and pork, I found both versions are equally nice.
2.  1 onion, finely chopped in very small pieces
3.  3 cloves of garlic, crushed
4.  1 tsp cinnamon powder
5.  1 tsp cumin
6.  1 tsp paprika
7.  Pinch of salt
8.  Pinch of white pepper
9.  A handful of flat leaf parsley, chopped
10. 1 egg beaten
11. 10g dried bread crumbs

For the Sauce:
12. 4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
13. 1 medium size onion, finely chopped
14. 2 cloves of garlic, crushed
15. 1 tsp tomato paste
16. ¼ tsp harissa paste
17. ¼ tsp cumin
18. ¼ cayenne pepper
19. ¼ paprika
20. 1 tin of peeled tomatoes in tomato juice approx xxxx ml
21. Pinch of salt
22. Pinch of white pepper
23. A handful of flat leaf parsley chopped
24. 2 eggs

For the Vegetables:
25. 3 tbsp extra virgin Olive oil
26. 1 carrot, quartered into big chunks
27. 1 turnip, quartered into big chunks
28. 3 bell peppers, slice into big chunks
29. a handful of raisins, prunes and dates chopped
30. ½  tsp harissa paste
31. ¼ tsp tumeric powder
32. 800ml chicken stock
33. Pinch of salt
34. Pinch of pepper

For the Meatballs:
1.  On a bowl mix all the “Meatballs” ingredients listed above, if your mixture is too wet add more breadcrumbs.
2.  Make small round balls out of the meatball mixture and set aside.

For the Sauce:
3.  Pre-heat oven to 200ºC
4.  On a frying pan over a medium heat add 2 tbsp of olive oil, when the oil is very hot add your meatballs in and cook until lightly brown, remove meatballs from the pan and set aside. (the oil needs to be very hot before meatballs are added this seals the flavours of the meat, keeps the balls in tact and does not falls apart into pieces)

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5.  Return the same pan to a medium heat, add another 2 tbsp of olive oil, add the onions and garlic and cook for 1 minute.
6.  Add tomato paste, harissa paste, cumin, cayenne pepper, paprika and tin tomatoes; simmer for 10 minutes.
7.  When the sauce has thickened, return your meatballs onto the pan, season with some salt and pepper and cook for 2 minutes; sprinkle over some chopped parsley.
8.  Transfer meatballs with sauce on a tagine dish; crack 2 eggs on top and place in the oven for 5 minutes or until the eggs has set.

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For the Vegetables:
9.  On a saucepan boil chicken stock, carrots and parsnips. Vegetables should be slightly undercook and not too soft and mushy. Drain cooked vegetables and set aside.
10.  On a frying pan over a medium heat, add 3tbsp of olive oil, harrisa paste, tumeric powder and bell peppers soften for 3 minutes, then add your carrots, parsnips, raisins, prunes and dates. Season with salt and pepper.

Serve warm with couscous.