Moroccan cuisine is usually a mix of Amazigh, Andalusian, and Mediterranean cuisines, with slight European (French and Spanish) and sub-Saharan influences.

A tagine, sometimes spelled “tajine,” is a traditional Moroccan cooking vessel made of ceramic or unglazed clay with a round base and low sides. A cone-shaped cover sits on the base during cooking. The conical lid traps steam during cooking and returns the liquid to the clay pot, resulting in a moist dish with concentrated flavors.

Tagine is also the name for a Maghrebi, or North African, dish cooked in the tagine pot. Tagine is closely associated with Moroccan cuisine, where slow-cooked savory stews made with meat, poultry, or fish, are cooked with vegetables, aromatic spices, dried fruit, and nuts.

Most people agree that the tagine’s origin dates back to the late 18th century when Harun al Rashid ruled the Islamic Empire. However, there is another school of thought that the use of ceramics in Moroccan cooking is probably of Roman influence; Romans were known for their ceramics and likely brought that tradition to their rule of Roman Africa. Either way, the first appearance of recipes cooked tagine-style appeared in the 9th century in the publication The Thousand and One Nights.

However, you don’t need one to make this dish—the entire meal comes together with the pots and pans you already have! The Moroccan in me is very proud to share this delicious meal and hope you will like it as much as I do!

Chickpeas and Zucchini Tagine
Prep Time
30 mins
Cook Time
30 mins
Total Time
1 hr
 
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Moroccan
Calories: 950 kcal
Ingredients
  • 1 Yellow Onions
  • 2 cloves Garlic (chopped)
  • 1 Small Lemon (juiced)
  • 1 large Zucchini
  • 1 can Chickpeas (15 Oz)
  • 1/2 cup Basmati Rice
  • 4 TBSP Sour Cream
  • 1 TBSP Moroccan Spice Blend
  • 1/2 Oz Sliced Roasted Almonds
  • 1/8 Cup Golden Raisins
  • 1/4 Oz Cilantro (chopped)
  • 2 TBSP Butter (unsalted)
Instructions
  1. Halve, peel and chop onion. Chop cilantro. Peel and mince garlic. Juice half of the lemon. Trim zucchini lengthwise, cut crosswise into 1/2 inch thick half moons. Drain and rinse chickpeas.

  2. Heat a drizzle of oil in a small pot, add 1/4 of the onion and cook, stirring, until soften and slightly golden. Stir in rice and cook as per the instructions on your package. Once cooked, keep covered and off heat until ready to serve.

  3. In a small bowl, combine chopped cilantro, 2 TBSP olive oil, a pinch of garlic, salt, pepper and half the lemon juice. Mix thoroughly.

    In a separate small bowl, combine sour cream, salt and the rest of the lemon juice. Mix thoroughly.

  4. Heat a large drizzle of oil in a large pan. Add remaining onion and let cook until soft and golden. Add zucchini and cook, stirring, until softened and lightly brown. Add the Moroccan spice blend, remaining garlic and salt to taste. Cook stirring until fragrant, about 2 to 3 minutes.

  5. Pour in 1/4 cup of water and add chickpeas. Bring to a low simmer and cook until liquid has reduced. Turn off heat, stir in 1 TBSP of butter until melted. Season with salt and pepper.

  6. Fluff rice with a flork and stir in 1 TBSP of butter and golden raisins. Season with salt and mix thoroughly.

  7. Serve rice on plate, topped with tagine and sliced almonds. Drizzle sour cream and cilantro sauces.

 

I’ve always loved a good Risotto and usually use Arborio rice (which you can easily find at Whole Foods, Target or online on Amazon). But this time I wanted to try a different, healthier version. So I decided to use white quinoa (bought at Trader’s Joe from which this recipe is adapted). Personally I can’t do quinoa but plenty of my friends do and they absolutely looooved that recipe! So go ahead try it and let me know how you liked it.

Mushroom Quinoa Risotto
Prep Time
15 mins
Cook Time
25 mins
Total Time
40 mins
 

 

Course: Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine: Italian
Servings: 2
Ingredients
  • 2 tbsp Olive oil
  • 4 oz Baby Bella mushrooms
  • 1/2 cup White Quinoa rinsed
  • 2 1/2 cups Veggie broth kept warm in pan
  • 2 1/2 tbsp White wine
  • 1 Shallot diced
  • 1 Garlic clove
  • 2 tbsp Parmesan vegan
  • 2 tbsp Sour Cream vegan
  • Salt to taste
Instructions
  1. In a large skillet heat olive oil over medium heat. Add sliced mushrooms and saute until golden and soft, about 5 minutes. Remove from skillet and set aside.

  2. Lower heat, add shallot and garlic and saute until softened, about 5 minutes. 

  3. Increase heat to medium and add the quinoa. Stir for about 3 minutes until quinoa is slightly toasted. Lower heat to a simmer. Add the wine and continue to stir until absorbed. 

  4. Pour about 1/2 cup of warm broth into quinoa and continue to stir and simmer until completely absorbed. keep stirring in broth 1/2 cup at a time until quinoa is creamy, about 20 minutes.

  5. Add salt and pepper to taste. Stir in the vegan Parmesan, remove from heat, cover with a lid and let stand for 2 minutes.

  6. Stir in the mushrooms and vegan sour cream. Serve with a sprinkle of fresh parsley on top.

Recipe Notes

If you don't want to use white wine, you can use Apple Cider Vinegar instead. For each cup of white wine, use 1/2 cup of ACV mixed with 1/2 cup of water.

Spicy Moroccan Carrots
Course: Appetizer, Salad, Side Dish
Cuisine: Moroccan
Servings: 4
Ingredients
  • 1 lb Medium carrots (peeled and sliced thinly)
  • 2 cloves Garlic (chopped)
  • 1 TBSP Cilantro (chopped)
  • 1 TBSP Olive Oil
  • 1/2 tsp Cumin
  • 1/2 tsp Paprika
  • 1/2 tsp Kosher salt
  • 1 pinch Cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 tsp Pickled lemon (optional)
Instructions
  1. Boil carrots for about 10 minutes. Once cooked, drain and set aside to cool down.

  2. In a cooking pan, drizzle olive oil. Add carrots, garlic, cilantro and all spices.

  3. Cook on low heat for about 10 minutes, stirring constantly.

  4. You can either serve it cold as a salad or warm as a side dish.

 

 

 

Indian food is among my favorite. Its vibrant colors, rich aromas and complex flavors remind me somehow of Moroccan food, my favorite ever! This dish is very simple and quick to make and taste delicious. You can have it spicy or simply spiced ;-), as an entrée or as a side dish. Perfect on a cold winter night…

Aloo Phujia
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Indian
Servings: 2
Ingredients
  • 1 Yellow Onion (chopped)
  • 4 TBSP Olive Oil
  • 1 lb Red Potatoes (cut in small cubes)
  • 2 Large Tomatoes (cut in small cubes)
  • 1 tsp Kosher Salt
  • 1/2 tsp Turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp Cayenne Pepper (optional)
  • 1/4 tsp Cumin
  • 1/8 Cup Cilantro (chopped)
  • 1/2 Cup Water (add more if needed)
Instructions
  1. Brown the onion slightly in oil in a medium skillet on low/medium heat.

  2. Add all spices (except the Cayenne if you don't want your dish spicy), mix well with the onion then add the potatoes and the water. Cook for about 10 to 15 minutes, stirring occasionally on low heat.

  3. Add the tomatoes, cover and cook on very low heat until potatoes are tender (about 20 minutes).

  4. Once ready, top with cilantro and serve.