Root Vegetable Tagine

This root vegetable tagine is a wonderfully warming dish for the cold December nights.  Hearty, healthy, delicious and loaded with flavour – what’s not to love!

If you don’t own a tagine you can use a casserole dish and foil or any oven proof dish with a lid.

Serves 6

You will need:

Splash of olive oil or argan oil

2 red onions, peeled and finely diced

4 cloves of garlic, finely chopped

3 tsp paprika

2 tsp cumin

2 tsp coriander

2 tsp ground ginger

2 tsp harissa

2 tbsp. tomato purée

2 litres vegetable stock

Large pinch of saffron

Salt & pepper

4 carrots, peeled and chopped into small chunks

1 sweet potato, peeled and chopped into small chunks

8 new potatoes, chopped in half

16 dried apricots or prunes (or a mixture of both)

Tin of chickpeas drained and rinsed

Tin of black eyed beans drained and rinsed

4 cinnamon sticks

2 star anise

Pith and zest of ½ a preserved lemon

4 tsp honey

1 large bunch of parsley, chopped

1 large bunch of coriander, chopped

Method

Preheat the oven to 150°C/gas mark 2. Heat the vegetable oil in a large pan, and sweat the onions. When they are soft, add the chopped garlic and cook for another 2-3 minutes. Add the dry spices and fry for 1 minute with the onion and garlic mix. Then add the harissa and tomato purée and cook for another minute. Add the stock and saffron and bring to the boil and allow to simmer for 10-15 minutes.

Take the pan off the heat and season with salt and pepper to taste. Take the dish you want to serve the tagine in and add the carrots, sweet potato, new potatoes, apricots or prunes, and cinnamon sticks, chickpeas and black eyed beans. Sprinkle with the lemon and honey, and then pour the stock mixture over the vegetables and pulses.

Place the lid of the tagine on top, or alternatively use foil. Cook slowly in the oven for 1½ –2 hours, by which time all of the vegetables should be cooked through. Adjust the seasoning to taste with harissa, lemon juice, honey salt and pepper if needed.

To serve, garnish with the fresh herbs.

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