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Thursday, February 3, 2011

Brrrrrr! Baby its COLD outside! Time for some Moroccan Harirra Soup.

The Blizzard of 2011 - or my favorite name for it... Kansas City Snownami... has passed and we are sitting in bitter cold temperatures.  Currently it is seven degrees below zero.  Even the cats aren't begging to go outside - now that's cold!

On the menu today is Moroccan Harirra Soup.  It is typically served in Morocco to break the fast of Ramadan along with dates.  However, it is also the perfect soup for a winter day.  My kids love it with a slice of Pita Bread (khubz) that we pick up from our local Middle Eastern bakery.  Enjoy the videos below which also include how to make Lamb Plum Tagine. 

Harirra Soup (Typical Recipe)

1/3 c Flour
1/3 c Chick peas
1/3 c Lentils Soak overnight
1/2 lb Lean lamb or beef diced
2 Large onions, chopped
Pinch of  Saffron
2 Tbs Paprika
1 Tbs Ras el Hanout
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tb Butter
2 Tbs Sea Salt
1/2 ts white or black pepper
1/2 cup Dried broad beans
1 1/2 lb Tomatoes (chopped)
1 Bunch parsley (finely chopped)
1 Bunch fresh coriander (finely chopped)
1 Bunch fresh celery (finely chopped)
1/3 cup Rice
1 Lemon
1/3 c flour in 1 c water;

Brown in lightly oil deep pan lamb, onions, saffron and paprika .. and all the spices. (increase or decrease according to taste). Add 6 cups of water, butter, salt, pepper, chick peas, parsley, coriander, celery. Covered for 2 hours over medium heat.
20 mins. before serving, blend with one cup of water the tomatoes, parsley, coriander then add to the sauce pan. Add vermicelli. When the vermicelli is cooked, add 1 T butter and lemon juice. Soup should be elevate; so add water or flour thickening if it is not. *Note: Lentils may be substituted for chick peas; meat can be chicken; yeast may be used in place of flour and water if the mixture was not made night before; rice may be substituted for vermicelli. A soup served each night at sundown to break the Ramadan Fast.

Video to Harirra & Lamb Plum Tagine Part One:

Video to Harirra & Lamb Plum Tagine Part Two:

Friday, January 21, 2011

Moroccan / Turkish Coffee

HISTORY: What Makes Coffee Moroccan - Turkish???
For hundreds of years the Turkish Empire (and later North African countries such as Morocco) imported Green Coffee beans from the highlands of Ethiopia and/or (recently) Brazil.

Once at home, these wonderfully complex, sweet beans are roasted to what we call a "Full Turkish Roast" then mixed with cardamom and ground to a fine powder producing a very hearty cup .

Dark Turkish Grind Coffee features a strong and slightly sweet flavor with a heavy aftertaste.

Thanks to its strong body, delicious flavour and long-lasting aroma, a cup of steaming hot Turkish coffee is a guaranteed favourite with all coffee lovers.

Part 1 - How to make Moroccan / Turkish coffee

Part 2 - How to make Moroccan / Turkish coffee

Turkish Coffee Recipe

Things I need to make Turkish Coffee:
Turkish Ibrik (a Coffee Decanter). To Order CLICK HERE
Fresh water.
Turkish Coffee Spice Mix. To Order CLICK HERE
Tukish Coffee. To Order CLICK HERE

For a 2 cup (16 oz) of water:

Step 1: Add the sugar first. 1 Tbsp or to taste.

Step 2: Add 1 tsp of the Coffee Spice Mix –Turkish Blend or to taste.

Step 3: Fill your ibrik (Coffee Decanter) with 2 cups (16 oz) of fresh cold water.

Step 4: Add 2 Tbsps of Turkish coffee.

Note how the coffee grinds float on the water. This is important, DO NOT STIR. The grinds actually act like a seal between the water and the air. This is important. You will stir in a later step, but for now, the floating coffee is necessary.

Step 5: Place decanter on stove top and start heating at medium to high heat. DO NOT WALK AWAY! DO NOT STIR!

After a few minutes things will start to happen. If the water starts to boil, you did not use enough coffee or the heat is too high. The coffee should never boil ... toss and start again.

The coffee should start to foam. The difference is the foaming is slow, boiling is fast. You should see the foam grow from around the coffee and start to fill the neck. DO NOT STOP WATCHING! Notice the foam building.

The foam will start to fill the neck and work it’s way up. When it is almost to the top of the ibrik, remove the ibrik from the heat source.

Step 6: Carefully stir the coffee and the foam will subside.
Put the ibrik back on the heat source. It will start to foam again, this time more quickly.
Again, remove from the heat source, stir down the foam, and replace.
Repeat a third time, the foam rises, remove and DO NOT STIR THIS LAST TIME.

Step 7: Scoop out the foam with a spoon and place it evenly in each cup.

Let the ibrik sit about 30 seconds so some of the grinds will settle.
Pour the coffee evenly in each cup.
Don’t pour out the last drop since the bottom of the ibrik will be sludge.

Step 8: Black? Of course. But your guests may add milk, or half and half.

Warn your guests, the grinds will settle to the bottom of your glass / demitasse / mug.
Turkish Coffee Recipe

Moroccan Tangia - a vintage recipe

Tangia refers to the amphora-shaped earthenware vessel it is cooked in as well as the name of the dish.  This simple pot is easy to use and creates succulant, healthy dishes with little preparation. 

Here is a vintage recipe from Majid's Berber family in the Zamouri region of Morocco.

Tanjia - Lamb with Ras el Hanout & Saffron

 2 Large Preserved Lemons
1 Large Onion, Coarsely Chopped
8 Medium Cloves Garlic, Coarsely Chopped
1 TBSP Cumin Seeds, toasted in dry skillet for 30 seconds, then ground
1 TBSP Ras el Hanout Spice Blend
1/4 Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil, plus more for garnish
3 TBSP coarsly chopped Cilantro
3 to 4 pounds Lamb Stew Meat (Leg of Lamb preferred) - May use Beef instead
Sea Salt
Freshly Ground Black Pepper
Pinch of Saffron Threads, soaked in 6 Tablespoons of Hot Water for 20 minutes
2 TBSP Smen - may use Ghee instead

Preparation:  Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Peel ONE of the preserved lemons and discard the inner flesh. Combine with onion, garlic, spices, olive oil and cilantro in the food processor. Pulse until a coarse paste is formed.

Place the meat shanks in the extra large Tangia vessel and season well with salt and pepper. Pour (or spread) the paste over the meat, add the saffron and its water and the smen. Cover with the 2nd lemon.

Cut a circle of parchment paper, using the lid of the tanjia pot as a template. Cover the opening of the tanjia pot with this paper, then cover tightly with a layer of aluminum foil and press the lid firmly on top.

Place the tangia in the oven and immediately reduce the temperature to 250 degrees. Cook for 4 to 5 hours (after 4 hours cooking liquid will form). The meat should be beyond stringiness - just butter soft and tender.