Tagine is one of those culinary words with a double meaning. (Tian is a similar case in point.) Tagine, for starters, refers to a hearty stew that’s a mainstay of Moroccan cooking. There’s also the covered pot, or tagine, you use to cook the stew.
Fortunately, you don’t have to cook your tagine in a tagine! As with any stew, a Dutch oven or similar covered pot works fine.
Chef and cookbook author Robin Asbell makes this point for the tagine (the stew) she’s developed. It’s a winter squash tagine with garbanzo beans and couscous. (Click here to go to recipe for Moroccan squash tagine.)
It’s a fitting and flavorful dish for winter.
You can use butternut squash or another winter squash. Butternut, currently at its seasonal peak, would be our choice. It’s a versatile member of the gourd family and lends a delicious flavor to soups, ravioli, stews, you name it. The blazing orange flesh makes for a gorgeous presentation.
This particular stew appears in Asbell’s fine cookbook New Vegetarian (Chronicle Books, 2009). It features 75 vegetarian recipes from around the globe.
In addition to winter squash, Asbell’s “sweet and hearty” tagine includes whole shallots and garlic cloves slow-cooked in extra virgin olive oil. It also includes almonds and prunes. The vegetables and nuts, meanwhile, are “bathed in spices” including fresh ginger, cinnamon, saffron and cayenne.
The tagine (again, the stew) is accompanied by another staple of Moroccan cuisine: couscous.
You can see another tagine recipe on our website: Moroccan fish tagine with tomatoes, olives and preserved lemons. (Click here to go to recipe for Moroccan fish tagine.)
Claude S. Weiller
Vice President of Sales & Marketing
California Olive Ranch