Photo Credit: Ghillie Basan
Lentil Tagine with Ginger and Ras El Hanout
Packed with ﬂavor, this spicy lentil tagine is best served on its own with a dollop of thick, creamy yogurt, a Moroccan fruit chutney and toasted ﬂatbread.
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- 2 tablespoons ghee or smen or 1 tablespoon olive oil plus 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- a large thumb-sized piece of fresh ginger, peeled and ﬁnely chopped
- 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 2 teaspoons cumin seeds
- 1 teaspoon coriander seeds
- 2 teaspoons ras el hanout*
- 1 1/2 cups brown lentils, rinsed and drained
- a large bunch of fresh coriander/cilantro, finely chopped
- sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Rase el hanout*
- 1 teaspoon black peppercorns
- 1 teaspoon cloves
- 1 teaspoon aniseed seeds
- 1 teaspoon nigella seeds
- 1 teaspoon allspice berries
- 1 teaspoon cardamom seeds
- 2 teaspoons ground ginger
- 2 teaspoons ground turmeric
- 2 teaspoons coriander seeds
- 2 pieces mace
- 2 pieces of cinnamon bark
- 2 teaspoons dried mint
- 1 dried red chilli/chile
- 1 teaspoon dried lavender
- 6 dried rose buds, broken up
- Heat the ghee in the base of a tagine or in a heavy-based saucepan, stir in the onion, ginger, garlic and sugar and sauté for 2–3 minutes until they soften and begin to color. Add the cumin and coriander seeds and cook for a further 1–2 minutes, then stir in the ras el hanout and toss in the lentils, making sure they are thoroughly coated.
- Pour in enough water to cover the lentils by about 2.5 cm/1 inch and bring it to the boil. Reduce the heat, put on the lid and simmer gently for about 35 minutes, until all the liquid has been absorbed but the lentils still have a bite to them.
- Season the lentils with salt and pepper to taste, toss in most of the coriander/cilantro and garnish with the rest.
Ras el hanout*
- Using a mortar and pestle, or an electric blender, grind together all the spices to form a coarse powder.
- Stir in the dried lavender and rose petals and tip the mix into an airtight container.
- You can store the spice mix for about 6 months if you keep it in a cool cupboard well away from direct sunlight
Excerpted from The Modern Tagine: Delicious Recipes for Moroccan One-Pot Meals by Ghillie Basan. Copyright © 2019. Published by Ryland Peters & Small.
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