Veal & Carrots Tagine
You may know or not, right now is Ramadan. Where I live today, no one around me is observing Ramadan. But in France, a few of my friends were. Moroccans or Tunisians for the most part, my friends and their families who were following this month-long fast, were always eager to share with others their wonderful sundown dinner. As soon as the sun comes down, the food comes out! And oh my! What food!!! I love pretty much all food dishes from North Africa: the Couscous (which for them is not only the bulgur, but a whole meal with meats, veggies and sausages cooked together), the pastries (way too time consuming to do for me) and of course, the Tagines!!!! In thousand different sorts, each families seemed to have their own recipe! So don’t stress yourself searching for THE recipe, there isn’t one. There are basics ingredients that are similar, but the combination remains up to your liking.
I have a few favorite, like chicken with lemons, lamb with prunes, or the all vegetarian version. That day, I had a lot of carrots to use, so I tried veal and carrots.
Although Tagines get their name from the dish they are cooked into (a base unit that is flat and circular with low sides, and a large cone or dome-shaped cover that sits on the base during cooking. The cover is so designed to promote the return of all condensation to the bottom (thanks Wiki)), you don’t need that specific dish to get great results. A good roasting pan with a lid will do, trust me, that’s what I used all those years before I got offered the fancy Le Creuset Tagine dish!
If you like combination of meat and fruits, sweet and spices, you will love Tagines! Just google it and pick whatever version sounds the best to you! But this one my friends ( from a french cooking book), doesn’t need a change to it, it was perfect!
(apparently, it’s Arabic for Bon Appetit!)
Ingredients (serves 6)
- 2 lbs veal shank or shoulder, in big chunks
- 1 & 1/4 lbs carrots peeled and cut in big chunks
- a dozen dried apricots
- 2 garlic gloves, minced
- 1 large onion, sliced
- 1/2 cup orange fresh juice
- 1 cup of chicken or veal broth
- 2 T olive oil
- 2 T honey
- 10 black peppercorn, grinned
- 1 t fresh minced ginger
- 1 t powdered cumin
- 1 t curcuma
- 1/2 t nutmeg
- 1/2 t saffron
- 1 clove
- Braise the onion and garlic with 1 T of oil in a large sauté pan, on medium heat, until golden. Remove and place in the Tagine dish.
- Using the same pan, add the remain oil and braise the veal chunks until golden brown, on medium-high heat. Once all seared, lower the heat to low. Add all the spices and mix well to coat all the meat. Then add the orange juice and broth. Let simmer for 5 min.
- Place the carrots and apricots on top of the onions in the dish. Then add the veal on top, pour the cooking juices all over. Drizzle everything with honey.
- Cover and cook for in a preheated oven at 400, for about an hour, or until the meat and carrots are fork tender. Check at 30 and 45 min to make sure there is still liquids in your dish. If not, or low, add more water or broth. At the end, you should have just a little sauce remaining and it should look syrupy.
- Serve with couscous, quinoa or potatoes and some Harissa (a Tunisian hot chili sauce) or chili flakes
Find the easy to share, email and print recipe on my Recipage.
- Recipes: A Week’s Worth of Moroccan Dishes from Jenny Morris (moroccotomorrow.org)
- ’80 Plates’ Episode 4: Tagines & Tantrums (mercurynews.com)
- My New Tagine (atomickaleidoscope.wordpress.com)