Thursday 2 August 2012

Butternut Pumpkin Tagine with Buttered Chilli Couscous

From The Modern Vegetarian, Maria Elia, Kyle Cathie Ltd, 2009.

I always enjoy a good tagine. The hot spicy dishes go down well in cold weather. This one was quite a breeze to make.

An onion was sautéed with a pinch of salt until softened, then a couple of chopped garlic cloves were added together with ground cumin, ground ginger, paprika and crushed coriander seeds. These were sautéed until their fragrance filled the air. At this stage I added a can of tomatoes, a couple of red chillies split along their length, a pinch of saffron, a little honey and a cinnamon stick. About two cups of water were added and all was brought to the boil. Butternut pumpkin, peeled and cut into pieces, was now added, the lid was put on and it was cooked for about half an hour.

It still appeared to be a little too watery at this stage so I took off the lid and let it cook a little longer. It was tasted for seasoning and adjustments were now made. Chopped coriander was added.

In the last few minutes of the tagine’s cooking the couscous was made ready. Couscous was placed in a bowl with some chopped green chilli, lemon zest and butter. Salt was added and boiling water was poured over. It was now covered and left to stand while I chopped up some dates and more coriander. At serving time it was fluffed up with a fork and the dates and coriander were added.

The tagine was served with flaked almonds on top.

As I expected when I began, this was a tagine that was full of spicy flavour with a hint of sweetness from the honey. The dates were a pleasant addition to the couscous.

Taste: ✔✔✔
Ease of cooking: ✔✔✔✔

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