Casablanca- Being in Morocco and not tasting tajine is a big mistake. Living in Morocco and not being able to cook tajine is an unpardonable mistake!
After I had lived in Casa for two months I decided (to try) to cook my first tajine au poulet (chicken). Well, that was a failure. Burnt chicken, dry veggies, no sauce… I didn’t give up, as they say practice makes perfect. I tried few more times. The effect was way better but it took ages to prepare.
Now I will write something for which I will certainly be lashed, spat on and crucified by 99.9% of Moroccans. Deservedly. I believe that time is precious so I came up with my westernized version of tajine. Its taste remains the same (well, almost…) but the fake tajine is not as time consuming as the original one. My proposition may appeal to those who miss the taste of this healthy, mouthwatering dish and didn’t make it to bring tajine plate to their homeland (baggage limitations and so on…) or simply suffer from time deficit;)
To prepare my westernized tajine you will need:
1- chicken (I use cubes but it depends on you)
2- carrot, tomato, potatoes, green beans, zucchini, pumpkin, onion
3- olive oil, water, lemon juice
4- turmeric, cumin, pepper, salt, saffron, ras el hanout (if you don’t have you may use a bit of ginger, cinnamon, paprika)
The preparation of my sinful version of this dish is a child’s play:
1- Boil water with all the spices and put sliced (1cm) potatoes, thick stripes of carrot and zucchini and green beans in it. After a while add also cubes of pumpkin- it doesn’t take so long to soften.
2- Fry the chicken (previously coated with all the spices) and chopped onion on a frying pan. Add a good deal of olive oil and water, sprinkle with spices again. Do not be stingy with spices! You need it to make the sauce for dipping the bread.
3- Once the veggies are soft put them on the chicken, decorate with slices of tomato, add lemon juice, cover and stew for a while. I always use my tajine plate to serve the dish. I also sprinkle it with the spices.
4- use your bread to dip in the sauce. No fork is allowed! Bon appetit!