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Moroccan Tagine Cooking


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#91 Bond Girl

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Posted 20 March 2005 - 07:01 PM

Paula, thanks for posting the recipes. I am so enjoying this thread.
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#92 Sackville

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Posted 21 March 2005 - 12:00 AM

News update:  There really has been a run on the tagines!  The tagines.com web site now says, for the Rifi tagines, "Order now and allow 12 - 16 weeks for delivery"  Last week it said "in stock"! :laugh:  :laugh:

Talk about mixed feelings.  My self-control held long enough that I can't have that instant gratification.  :shock: Now I really may as well hold off on the order.  :hmmm:

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I hate to burst your bubble but the site said the same thing when I ordered mine. I just checked the tracking and it is on its way. :raz:

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You could always just organise a trip to Morocco and pick out your own :wink:

#93 Smithy

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Posted 21 March 2005 - 12:03 AM

News update:  There really has been a run on the tagines!  The tagines.com web site now says, for the Rifi tagines, "Order now and allow 12 - 16 weeks for delivery"  Last week it said "in stock"! :laugh:   :laugh:

Talk about mixed feelings.  My self-control held long enough that I can't have that instant gratification.  :shock: Now I really may as well hold off on the order.  :hmmm:

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I hate to burst your bubble but the site said the same thing when I ordered mine. I just checked the tracking and it is on its way. :raz:

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You could always just organise a trip to Morocco and pick out your own :wink:

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It's crossed my mind. I missed out on my Egypt excursion this year, and don't see Morocco happening this year either. I'm trying to work out whether I have friends good enough to deal with a tagine via Insha-Allah mail...

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#94 Smithy

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Posted 21 March 2005 - 12:03 AM

Good grief, I just realized I posted the same thing twice. Sorry, folks -
<insert favorite funny story here while I pull my foot out of my mouth>

Edited by Smithy, 21 March 2005 - 01:13 PM.

Nancy Smith, aka "Smithy"
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"Every day should be filled with something delicious, because life is too short not to spoil yourself. " -- Ling (with permission)

"There comes a time in every project when you have to shoot the engineer and start production." -- author unknown


#95 Bond Girl

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Posted 21 March 2005 - 08:12 AM

There is a link on Pauls's website for Berber sources that organizes Moroccan trips. Vacationing in May would be too short a notice, but was I tempted.....I'm hoping my tagine arrive in time for the shad season. Water is still too cold in these parts.
Ya-Roo Yang aka "Bond Girl"

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#96 Sackville

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Posted 21 March 2005 - 08:42 AM

There is a link on Pauls's website for Berber sources that organizes Moroccan trips.  Vacationing in May would be too short a notice, but was I tempted.....I'm hoping my tagine arrive in time for the shad season.  Water is still too cold in these parts.

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I can also recommend tours through www.eqtravel.com -- great fair trade group, though they mostly do desert treks. Generally, if you ever have the chance then do go. It is an amazing country!

#97 Wolfert

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Posted 21 March 2005 - 08:50 AM

Berbersources.com is a wonderful site and I highly recommend it.

Jill, who used to teach French at Cornell, has put together museum quality items fromMorocco. I wish I could go on her trip because she has the best contacts.

Without sounding like a commercial, I will tell you that I have bought lots of beautiful claypots from her. Not all are for cooking but they are beautiful and unique. She doesn't have the Riffian tagine.


And, she is the only one I know who has the Slow Food award winning argan oil. There is lots of argan oil around , hers is the best.

With that said, I think I better rush over to her site and get that green amlou bowl before it goes!

Edited by Wolfert, 21 March 2005 - 08:51 AM.

“C’est dans les vieux pots, qu’on fait la bonne soupe!”, or ‘it is in old pots that good soup is made’.

#98 Smithy

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Posted 21 March 2005 - 09:47 AM

Last night I did the clay pot vs. glazed ceramic pot test. In those pots I cooked an adaptation of Djaj Mqualli, Chicken with Preserved Lemon and Olives, from Claudia Roden's The New Book of Middle Eastern Food. It was an adaptation in the sense that she's written the recipe for a heavy metal pot and does the browning first. I used the "start the tagine cold" method I'm learning here, so I didn't brown the chicken first but put it under the broiler later.

The two pots are close to the same size and shape. Since the lima green glazed casserole doesn't pretend to be stovetop-safe, I put it up on the wok ring. I started out over a small electric coil, thinking that would keep the heat from rising up around the sides as noted previously, and quickly learned that the heat rose and spread anyway. I shifted the assembly to a large coil so the treatment of the two pots would be as similar as possible. The Egyptian clay pot sat on a flame tamer on a large coil. Here they are, just starting to warm the spices and onions:
Posted Image
My bad lab technique: the recipe called for adding water to about halfway up the chicken, and that's what I did. I remembered just after that step that I'd wanted to measure the difference in liquid, before and after, between the two setups. I wasn't up for disassembling the whole thing, so I sucked out as much water as I could with a turkey baster and measured it, then returned it to its pot. It seemed to be pretty even: about 1-1/3 c. in the lima casserole and 1-1/4 c. in the clay bowl.
Posted ImagePosted Image


Once they had come to the boil, I had to lower the heat way down to get the slow low simmer. The clay pot was slower to respond to changes in heat settings, but each time I changed one burner I ended up changing the other, and they always ended at the same burner setting. Since the ceramic pot was sitting a good 2" off the coil I take that to mean it's a more efficient heat conductor. (My stove isn't fancy but it's fairly new and I think the burners run at the same rate.) The glazed casserole had a lid, which, by the way, did NOT stay cool the way a tagine lid is supposed to. The clay pot got crumpled wet parchment paper and a tight aluminum foil cap. I didn't think to use parchment paper in the lima casserole.

Note on the slow low simmer: my probe said the temperature at the bottom of the liquid for each pot was 205*F. This is what I remembered from last time and didn't want to report. What's going on that it's below 212*F? I checked the probe. It measures boiling water at 210*F so my readings are pretty reliable.

The broiled meat looked the same; neither set threw off more fat than the other. The clay pot meat is on the right.
Posted Image
Now the differences started coming out.
(1) Liquid left over: The lima pot casserole, after the meat was removed for broiling, had a bit more liquid than the clay pot, but not much more than their original differences. Neither had generated enough liquid to cover the chicken. What was significant was that the glazed casserole sauce had almost twice as much fat in it as the clay pot sauce. It was also interesting that the glazed casserole sauce took considerably longer to boil down than the sauce in the clay pot. (I used those vessels to boil the respective sauces down.) Is that because of the higher fat content in the sauce? I defatted to some degree, but wasn't up for straining out all the onion and waiting to let the sauce separate out, so the percentage difference in the two sauces probably held.
(2) Meat texture: The meat looked the same, and darned pretty. However, of the chicken thighs in the lima casserole, 1 out of 5 was falling-apart tender. 5 of the 6 thighs in the clay pot were falling-apart tender.
The clay-pot chicken is at the right, and glazed casserole chicken is at top.
Posted Image

Summary: the two pots behaved more nearly the same than the clay pot vs. the Le Creuset in terms of liquid generated, fat thrown off, temperature settings, and cook times. The unglazed clay pot still generated a more tender meat, and a less fatty sauce. Do you suppose the fat's also getting schlurped into the pot? Could it be contributing to that hydraulic pull somehow?

Edited to correct some photo problems. Many thanks to Fifi for her help here!

Edited by Smithy, 22 March 2005 - 12:10 AM.

Nancy Smith, aka "Smithy"
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#99 Smithy

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Posted 21 March 2005 - 10:50 AM

I do, actually, have another question about the Djaj Mqualli: what to do with all that chicken. The seasonings were powdered ginger, twice as much powdered cinnamon, a bit of saffron, salt and pepper, onions, garlic, and at the end green olives and preserved lemon.

For my tastes, the finished dish was too cinnamony. It's not bad - certainly better than edible - but I prefer a whisper of cinnamon on chicken and this is more of a shout. Now, what can I do with the rest of the chicken to balance out that cinnamon? What other seasonings would help balance it? I'm kicking around ideas like putting chicken chunks into a rice dish with more lemon and olives, more ginger, nuts, maybe some artichoke hearts. What about cumin? Allspice? Mace??

What other directions could I go with this cinnamony chicken meat? Would it work with tomatoes? Put it into some beans? A salad? Simmer the whole in a broth and run the sauce in a different direction?

Any and all suggestions will be entertained.

Nancy Smith, aka "Smithy"
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#100 Wolfert

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Posted 21 March 2005 - 11:34 AM

First: Thank you for that incredible report. When will I ever have the time to absorb all this knowledge that you are putting forth?.

Second: I know Claudia Roden and she is an old friend of mine dating back to 1973. I don't always agree with her on Moroccan cooking. I believe Middle Eastern cooking is not North African cooking.

Third: The sauces in Morocco are numerous but codified for over two hundred years. I'm not kidding. There are variations throughout the country, but when the word mqalli is used, it means a certain type of sauce whether it is for everyday type tagine or a special one for a holiday.

The everyday mqalli uses pepper, turmeric, saffron, garlic, salt, and ginger; the chicken, if using, is cut up or left whole and is heated in the warmed oil along with the spices and turned on all sides to get the spices into the flesh. Grated onion is sometimes used to help thicken the sauce. Nowadays, tomato is sometimes added. In the traditional everyday mqalli, it is garnished with preserved lemon and olives, but you can make a m'qalli with vegetables such as artichokes and fava beans, or okra and quince instead.
When cinnamon is added to a m'qalli, it is for the sweet version. Think prunes or figs or toasted almonds.


There are seven other major sauces in Moroccan cooking; five of them are garnished with preserved lemon and olives; almost all can be garnished with sweet fruits instead. It is the spice structure that makes the difference.

The mhammer of the upthread with chicken or lamb or beef is predominately colored red with lots of paprika. The word means reddish.

Rules are to be broken, of course, but when one says m'qalli, m'ghdour, marka, m'hammer, dalaa, emchermel, massal, or kdra, ---names for certain tagines iwth special spices and unique cooking methods, most everyone in Morocco knows what you mean.

of

Edited by Wolfert, 21 March 2005 - 12:18 PM.

“C’est dans les vieux pots, qu’on fait la bonne soupe!”, or ‘it is in old pots that good soup is made’.

#101 Adam Balic

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Posted 21 March 2005 - 11:45 AM

A quick question regarding cinnamon in North African cooking. Is there a prefered type to be used? In various recipes I see mention of both Ceylon cinnamon (Cinnamomum zeylanicum) and cassia/Chinese cinnamon (Cinnamomum cassia), but sometimes I'm not clear on which one to use.

#102 fifi

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Posted 21 March 2005 - 11:46 AM

I can't help you on the seasonings.

The relative performance of the pots LC/glazed pottery/unglazed pottery, doesn't surprise me. Both the LC and glazed pottery are non-absorbent but they have very different thermal properties. Of course, with the unglazed you have that absorption thing going on. I am sure that some of the fat went into the clay but I have no idea how much. We have already discussed why there is less water in the unglazed clay.

There is a tendency to think that oil will "seal" the clay. I am not sure that is what is going on. I would expect oil to migrate into the clay and some to remain there adsorbed to the particle surfaces. This means that the oil is "attached" via molecular forces and would leave the pot still "porous" to water and water vapor. There was plenty of olive oil in that recipe that I did in the Chamba and the subsequent bean cooking I did here didn't seem to stop water migration when I cooked the beans. What I don't know is, after years of cooking, whether or not the structure gets "clogged up." Remember we are dealing with the microscopic and molecular structure here.
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#103 Wolfert

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Posted 21 March 2005 - 11:50 AM

Adam,

Both types of cinnamon are used in Moroccan cooking.

The cassia is used more often in tagines; the softer 'real' cinnamon is more elegant for desserts.

Bisteeya or bstilla is, to my taste, delicious with the softer cinnamon.
“C’est dans les vieux pots, qu’on fait la bonne soupe!”, or ‘it is in old pots that good soup is made’.

#104 Wolfert

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Posted 21 March 2005 - 12:00 PM

whether or not the structure gets "clogged up." Remember we are dealing with the microscopic and molecular structure here.




The romertopf company has a website called claypotcooking.com. There I have read warnings that the romertopf is in danger of clogged pores, thus making the pots unusable. Of course, they are soaking the pot before each use and cooking by the released steam.


Fifi: I'm beginning to believe it makes very little difference whether you use a fully glazed, semi glazed or unglazed ceramic pot for tagines. Am I correct?
“C’est dans les vieux pots, qu’on fait la bonne soupe!”, or ‘it is in old pots that good soup is made’.

#105 Adam Balic

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Posted 21 March 2005 - 12:01 PM

Ah, that is good to know, as you know the default in the UK is to use 'real' cinnamon.

#106 Smithy

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Posted 21 March 2005 - 12:16 PM

Wow, Paula. Talk about a wealth of knowledge! Thank you!

First off, I may have given an incorrect impression. I can't look at the book again until tonight, but it's possible that the Djaj Mqualli is presented as Middle Eastern (as the name of the book implies) rather than Moroccan - unless that name is by definition a Moroccan, or otherwise North African, name? It's entirely possible that I picked up a recipe and misunderstood its intent. I was looking for something different to do with the chicken than I'd already done, with the ingredients I had on hand. (Now I've run out of preserved lemons.)

It sounds as though I got the procedure right for using the tagine, taking the ingredients from a recipe written for Le Creuset. Do you agree? Or did I miss a step or add something in? Should I not have browned at the end?

Second: I think you're saying the cinnamon didn't belong with the preserved lemons and olives, and that the recipe is a blend of two versions - one the savory, one the sweet. Did I understand correctly? It seemed out of balance for me, but people's tastes vary.

Third: The sauce discussion. The flash of illumination here was enough to make people wonder where the photographer was! That is exactly how my mind works: eight major sauces, certain ingredients they'd go with, certain dish types they'd be used on. That makes sense. Have you written it that way in any of your books? Do you intend to? Or would you be willing to expound on those sauces and their applications somewhere around here?

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#107 fifi

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Posted 21 March 2005 - 12:18 PM

whether or not the structure gets "clogged up." Remember we are dealing with the microscopic and molecular structure here.



The romertopf company has a website called claypotcooking.com. There I have read warnings that the romertopf is in danger of clogged pores, thus making the pots unusable. Of course, they are soaking the pot before each use and cooking by the released steam.


Fifi: I'm beginning to believe it makes very little difference whether you use a fully glazed, semi glazed or unglazed ceramic pot for tagines. Am I correct?

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Ah ha! They are "steam cleaning" as they go. I am not really being sarcastic about that. It makes sense.

I think you are largely correct about the glazed versus unglazed tagines. I am beginning to think that there is probably not a discernable difference and that the thermal properties of the clay overshadow any effects of absorption/evaporation in the unglazed. I am sure they are there, but don't make a difference that can be seen in the cooking.

But, I think I will stick with unglazed for a while. It just looks so cool and interesting things are going on there. I have a lot to learn.

What I would like to see compared is that Le Creuset tagine versus a clay one. For some instinctive reason, a cast iron tagine has always just seemed wrong. And I have had that instinct for a long time. I have no idea why as I am just now, this late in life, becoming enamoured of clay pot cooking.
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#108 Smithy

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Posted 21 March 2005 - 12:27 PM


Fifi: I'm beginning to believe it makes very little difference whether you use a fully glazed, semi glazed or unglazed ceramic pot for tagines. Am I correct?

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...
I think you are largely correct about the glazed versus unglazed tagines. I am beginning to think that there is probably not a discernable difference and that the thermal properties of the clay overshadow any effects of absorption/evaporation in the unglazed. I am sure they are there, but don't make a difference that can be seen in the cooking.

...

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I thought there was a discernable difference in the meat tenderness, at least with my chicken. Are you thinking that's an artifact of my technique, instead?

Edited by Smithy, 21 March 2005 - 12:37 PM.

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#109 Wolfert

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Posted 21 March 2005 - 12:34 PM

sounds as though I got the procedure right for using the tagine, taking the ingredients from a recipe written for Le Creuset. Do you agree? Or did I miss a step or add something in? Should I not have browned at the end?




Mqualli isn't usually browned, but I do it..


undefinedSecond: I think you're saying the cinnamon didn't belong with the preserved lemons and olives, and that the recipe is a blend of two versions - one the savory, one the sweet. Did I understand correctly? It seemed out of balance for me, but people's tastes vary.



That is exactly what I was saying.



Yes, almost all of the information I posted above is in my first book on Moroccan cooking. I have learned more since then and added it to the list. There is no way to correct the spelling since it is transliterated not only from Arabic but sometimes Berber.

The original 1973 edition had 8 photographs. Unfortunatley, the best quality slides got lost...I have some of the rejects such as this one for tagine of chicken with lemon and smothered with olives. You don't need perserved lemons, just the juice is fine. Picholine olives are the choice ones to use. When I wrote the book they weren't available here.

[img]http://http://forums.egullet.org/uploads/1106270544/gallery_8703_646_1106277846.jpg[/img][
“C’est dans les vieux pots, qu’on fait la bonne soupe!”, or ‘it is in old pots that good soup is made’.

#110 Smithy

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Posted 21 March 2005 - 12:50 PM

I can't help you on the seasonings.

... Of course, with the unglazed you have that absorption thing going on. I am sure that some of the fat went into the clay but I have no idea how much. We have already discussed why there is less water in the unglazed clay.

There is a tendency to think that oil will "seal" the clay. I am not sure that is what is going on. I would expect oil to migrate into the clay and some to remain there adsorbed to the particle surfaces. This means that the oil is "attached" via molecular forces and would leave the pot still "porous" to water and water vapor. ...

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Fascinating, isn't it? Yes, I'm quite sure the clay is still porous to water; we've seen evidence of the water loss. But it seems to be doing something to the fat too. I'll settle for adsorption until a better idea comes along.

Nancy Smith, aka "Smithy"
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#111 andiesenji

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Posted 21 March 2005 - 12:54 PM

I have a question regarding cinnamon. (and other spices)
Is it (or other spices) always ground and added directly to a dish.
Back in the '70s when I hosted a young lady from Morocco who was here attending an artist's workshop for several weeks, she often broke up a selection of spices and infused them in broth or juice (and I believe once in tea) and added the liquid to a dish.
I thought at the time it was because she didn't consider ground spices fresh enough and that was prior to the time that electric spice grinders were available.
She grated some of the spices but simply crushed some in a mortar.
It has been thirty years and my memory might be a little foggy, but I have been using this in a couple of recipes over the years, just not very often.

I also remember when she made couscous from scratch. We drove all over town looking for an Italian market that had "real" semolina flour so she could make it in the traditional manner.
It was fascinating but seemed like an awful lot of work so I never tried making it myself.
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#112 Wolfert

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Posted 21 March 2005 - 01:11 PM

[img]http://http://forums.egullet.org/uploads/1106270544/gallery_8703_646_1106277846.jpg[/img] Tagine djej bil zeetoun meslalla magdour


In Morocco, spices are sold whole and ground. Whole are used for tisanes and for grinding your own at home in a brass mortar.

The reason you are asked to use ground spices (except for occasional cinnamon stick or bayleaf which can easily be removed) is the sauce must become smooth. Ginger, for example, is always used ground for tagines.

Onions are grated so they will dissolve. Sometimes, a second bowl of chopped onions will be added to give crunch or another texture. MOroccan food is quite complex beyond the spicing.

Nowadays, some chefs in the States use fresh ginger in place of the dried and ground. That's to their taste and that is fine.

I just prefer to write about traditional cooking.

On the other hand, there is only good tasting food and not so good tasting food. I'll go for the former everytime no matter whether it is traditional or not.

Edited by Wolfert, 21 March 2005 - 02:44 PM.

“C’est dans les vieux pots, qu’on fait la bonne soupe!”, or ‘it is in old pots that good soup is made’.

#113 Smithy

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Posted 21 March 2005 - 03:10 PM

On the other hand, there is only good tasting food and not so good tasting food. I'll go for the former everytime no matter whether it is traditional or not.

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Hear, hear! If that isn't someone's tagline, it should be.

Nancy Smith, aka "Smithy"
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"Every day should be filled with something delicious, because life is too short not to spoil yourself. " -- Ling (with permission)

"There comes a time in every project when you have to shoot the engineer and start production." -- author unknown


#114 Smithy

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Posted 21 March 2005 - 03:24 PM

*Press Release - URGENT! Immediate broadcast requested.*

"It has come to our attention that there has been a run on tagines. The tagine market is in a shambles and tagine futures are soaring basis a deepseated fear in the marketplace that supply will not keep up with demand. A congressional committee in the US has been convened to investigate. Senator Honksalot has stated, 'We will get to the bottom of this deplorable situation. Our investigators are looking into a secret Society that operates on the internet.' Stay tuned to your local news sources for updates on this fast breaking news."

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I just read this and suffered the coffee-spraying-through-the-nose syndrome so ofted described on various threads.
Thank goodness I have a "KeySkin" keyboard cover, otherwise my keyboard might be in sad shape at this time.
For some reason, as I was reading the above, the scene in the movie Li'l Abner where the "Senator Phogbound" (or whatever he was) is orating and is followed by the song "The Country's in the Very Best of Hands."
...

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I guess it's a good thing I'm reviewing this thread. Now I understand why the refrain "Jubilation T. Cornpone, Jubilation T. Cornpone, dum dum dah dah..." has been ringing through my mental Muzak system all day.

Nancy Smith, aka "Smithy"
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"There comes a time in every project when you have to shoot the engineer and start production." -- author unknown


#115 Carolyn Tillie

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Posted 21 March 2005 - 03:41 PM

Regarding the cinnamon thing -- I followed one recipe that I found too cinnamony as well and I reverted to simply adding a whole cinnamon stick to the broth while simmering instead of using it as a powder on the meat. I think it made it more subtle. Also, the last time I made my Chicken with Preserved Lemon & Olive tagine, I had run out of dried ginger and used fresh. I think it made the overall dish 'brighter.'

#116 Wolfert

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Posted 21 March 2005 - 03:46 PM

Hear, hear! If that isn't someone's tagline, it should be.

I was paraphrasing my teacher, Andre Guillot, who used to say "there is only good cooking and bad cooking"

Carolyn: You aren't alone. Many American chefs use fresh ginger and prefer it that way. It is when you try to eat Moroccan style with the first three fingers of your right hand hlding a small crust of bread to dip into that smooth sauce that the strings just don't work.

Regarding the cinnamon thing -- I followed one recipe that I found too cinnamony as well and I reverted to simply adding a whole cinnamon stick to the broth while simmering instead of using it as a powder on the meat. I think it made it more subtle.

Subtle? Moroccan food? It could have been the type of cinnamon you used.
“C’est dans les vieux pots, qu’on fait la bonne soupe!”, or ‘it is in old pots that good soup is made’.

#117 Adam Balic

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Posted 22 March 2005 - 02:09 AM

O.K. I am going to cook some "Moroccan" food tonight. Well almost.

The mains are going to be an older form of Mrouzia and a bastardised version of Paula's "Seafood Bisteeya" (I went fishing on Sunday).

I have a copy of the Charles Perry et al. "Mediaval Arabic Cooking", which is quite fun and interesting to cook from. In the 14th century "Description of Familiar things" there is a recipe for Marwaziyya, which is named for the central asian city of Merv and is an thought to be an ancestor of the North African feast dish Mrouzia.

My version of the recipe is:

1.5 kg meat (lamb)
500 gm onions (grated)
2.5 ounces raisins
2 ounces of jujubes*
6 ounces of prunes
vinegar
mint
mixed spices
saffron
sugar

Mix meat with spices and onion, rest overnight.
Gently heat the meat mixture until fragrant
Add pre-soaked fruit
Cook for 1.5-2.0 hours, add sugar/vinegar syrup to taste.
Adjust seasoning with more spices, salt and mint, glaze under the grill and leave to settle for 10 minutes or so.


I comparison of this recipe and the extant version shows some interesting differences, the use vinegar and sugar instead of honey. The spice mixture is unknown, so I am going to male mu own.

Jububes are often called Chinese or Red dates and although they look like this they are not related to dates and are the fruit of the shrub Ziziphus jujuba. They taste similar to dates though.

This is my tagine, which I bought in Meknes, it is about 40 cm wide at the base.
Posted Image
I have no idea if it is a particular traditional style or if it just a tourist item, but I was very happy to get it back to Scotland intact on a backpacking holiday.

#118 Sackville

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Posted 22 March 2005 - 04:01 AM

Be careful in making sure your tagine is for cooking! It's hard to tell from a picture, but often the decorated ones are just for serving and not for cooking on top of the stove with. They tend to be thinner and will crack if you try and put them over heat.

#119 Adam Balic

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Posted 22 March 2005 - 04:07 AM

Thanks for the advice (where were you 3 years ago? :smile: ), I have cooked with it a couple of dozen time, orginally on a diffuser, but now I put it directly on the gas. No problems yet (crosses fingers).

#120 Sackville

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Posted 22 March 2005 - 04:30 AM

Thanks for the advice (where were you 3 years ago? :smile: ), I have cooked with it a couple of dozen time, orginally on a diffuser, but now I put it directly on the gas. No problems yet (crosses fingers).

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Glad to hear it's held up to tests! I'd just hate to see anyone ruin such a beautiful tagine. Mine is ugly as heck (just a poor man's tagine from a tiny market) but it's thick and sturdy. Don't think anything could break it. :smile: