Now that the weather’s getting colder, I’m finding myself craving warming, comforting dishes. But as I’m also eating healthy, the challenge is not to reach for the stodgy, fatty foods. This Moroccan vegetable tagine is a real favourite of mine. I love the deep blend of flavours and the way the sweetness of the dried fruit and the smoked paprika contrast with the spicier elements. It’s a gorgeous dish packed full of vegetables and general goodness.
And as with so many of my recipes, I always batch cook this, generally quadrupling the ingredients so I have plenty of portions ready and waiting in the freezer for those days when I can’t face cooking.
The word tagine refers to the traditional Middle Eastern pots the dish is traditionally cooked and served in, although it is widely used to refer to the food itself too. I don’t have a tagine big enough to make up the quantities I need, but it tastes equally as good when made in a regular large saucepan.
It’s simple to make, taking around 45 minutes to prepare and cook. Plus you only need one pot, so there’s not much cleaning up afterwards, either. I hope you enjoy it.
Ingredients for Moroccan vegetable tagine – serves 4
2 tbsp olive oil
1 large onion, peeled and roughly chopped
2 cloves of garlic
1 tsp ground smoked paprika
1 tsp cumin (you may like to add more, depending on taste)
1 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp ground chilli powder (you may like to add more, depending on taste)
½ tsp ground ginger or ½ cm cube of fresh ginger, finely grated
2 courgettes, sliced and halved
2 carrots, peeled and sliced
2 aubergines, sliced and halved
2 tins chopped tomatoes
2 tbsp tomato puree
2 tins chick peas, drained and rinsed
A handful of chopped dried apricots or raisins
1 handful of fresh, chopped coriander, plus extra to garnish
- Warm the olive oil in a large saucepan, then gently fry the onion and garlic for five minutes, or until softened.
- Stir in the spices until the onions are coated.
- Add the courgettes, carrots and aubergines and cook for 10-15 minutes, until softened.
- Add the tinned tomatoes, tomato puree and dried apricots and simmer for five minutes.
- Add the chick peas and a handful of fresh, chopped coriander and cook for a further five minutes.
- Season with salt and pepper to taste, garnish with fresh coriander and serve with cous cous, rice or flat bread.