Monday, 10 August 2009

Paper Chef #43

As soon as I had read this month's ingredients for the Paper Chef (number 43!) i knew what I was going to make. A sweet spicy couscous. But Paul suggested a Tagine! Actually his idea was better so I went with it.
The ingredients selected by Silejeng of
Javaholic were: couscous, fresh chilies, rosemary and her selection of peaches.
A Tagine is a slow cooked, North African dish that is braised at a low temperature. From what I have read there is no set guidelines as to what goes into a Tagine.
But they all do contain a mixture of herbs and spices that produce a very aromatic & tasty dish.
I decided to use pork even though its not a "traditional" North African meat, as it goes well with peaches, chili & other herbs & spices.
I've used dried peaches as fresh peaches aren't available (apparently its winter in Melbourne therefore the wrong season for stone fruits) and that dried fruit hold their shape better & release a more concentrated flavour to the dish.
Ive also used a combination of both fresh & dried Chili in the dish, Dried for the kick & fresh for the subtle flavour.
Couscous is another north African staple, I think of couscous as a "filler" to which you add the flavours and textures you want.
In this instance I've added dried peach, dried mint & pistachio nuts. Its all about the flavour & texture.

Pork Tangine with Peaches
For the Tagine
500g pork neck, cubed
1 small red chili, seeded & finely sliced
1/2 red capsicum, peeled & cut into strips
1/2 onion, cut into wedges
1 clove garlic, cut into quarters
6 cherry tomatoes, peeled
6 dried peaches roughly diced
1/4 tsp dried chili
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground cumin
1/4 tsp ground ginger
salt to season
1/4 cup red wine
1/4 cup stock
1/4 cup water
1 sprig Rosemary

For the Couscous
100g couscous
100ml stock
1 tbls oil
1/2 tsp dried mint
10g pistachio slivers
1 dried peaches, finely diced
1 tbls butter

Pre-heat the oven to 160c
Place the pork, onion chili, capsicum, garlic & peaches into a lidded oven proof dish.
Sprinkle all the dried spices over
Toss the ingredients to coat them in the spices
Add the tomatoes, rosemary & liquids
Cover and put into the oven for about 2 hrs

When the tagine is almost done, start the couscous.
Bring the stock & oil to the boil in a lidded sauce pan & remove from the heat.
Add the couscous stirring until it start to thicken & cover.for 10 minutes
Add the butter & fluff with a fork & then add the remaining ingredients & toss.
Sprinkle the coriander over the tagine and serve.


Murasaki Shikibu said...

Your entry sounds delicious. I'll be back next month for PC, but I just couldn't kick myself into cooking anything with peaches. :)

Lori said...

So funny, I was so close to making a tangine! How funny is that. I bet this was terrific!

Tricia said...

This sounds really delicious! A few months ago I repeatedly read a book to my youngest child, where the father would recite a story from his childhood in Morocco while making a tagine. If we get that book from the library again, I'll imagine him making this.