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Thursday, May 2, 2013

Armenian warm veggie dish ♥

This is a great dish and super healthy and tasty,  a rich, warm and comforting dish, similar to a stew or a hot pot. It’s sweet, yet a little spicy. It has a scent of cinnamon and sweet raisins with a twist of lemon and cilantro. Not to mention, it’s perfect for a gloomy day. ♥

 
Let me quickly explain the tagine (or tajine). It is similar to a large clay pot with a conical lid. I am not a scientist, but as far as I understand the moist and flavors that evaporates from the food stays within the lid and – thanks to its shape – drips down back into the food. So the food is steamed in it’s own vapors and cooked/baked at the same time, isn’t that just groovy!? The result is incredibly tender vegetables filled with flavors.
 
Serves 4 people
You can use almost any kind of vegetables in this stew, it’s perfect for emptying the fridge.
3 tbsp olive oil
1 large onion, roughly chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 inch fresh ginger, minced (or 1 tsp grounded)
1-2 tbsp grounded cinnamon
1 tsp cumin
salt
2-3 tsp harissa paste (or dried harissa)
2 cups canned chopped tomatoes
1 lemon, juice and zest
a handful fresh cilantro1 small pumpkin, peeled and cut into 2-inch pieces1 sweet potato, peeled and cut into 2-inch pieces
3 carrots, peeled and cut into 2-inch pieces
1 zucchini, cut into 2-inch pieces10 dried apricots1/2 cup chickpeas/garbanzo beans, pre boiled
a handful raisins

Serve with: white quinoa or couscous, roasted almonds, fresh cilantro and fresh mint
In a clay pot: Heat olive oil in a large clay pot and sauté the onion for a few minutes until it softens. Add garlic, ginger and the spices and stir around before adding harissa, tomatoes, lemon juice and fresh cilantro, Bring the tomato sauce to a boil and then lower the heat.
Add pumpkin, carrots, sweet potato, zucchini and apricots. Stir around, make sure that all vegetables are somewhat covered in tomato sauce. Put the lid on and simmer for about an hour. Stir carefully once or twice, otherwise leave the lid on.

In a tagine: Prepare the tomato sauce according to the instructions above. Transfer it to the tagine. Add the vegetables, attach the lid and put in the oven on low temperature for at least an hour. When the vegetables feel tender, add chickpeas and raisins and let everything simmer for 5 minutes before removing it from the oven.
Serve the tagine in bowls together with cooked quinoa. Sprinkle with almonds, lemon zest and fresh spices. enjoy! ♥
 
 

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