Cauliflower and Beef Tagine
You may think this is simply another tagine. You may think they’re all the same, after all. Tagines may seem like they use the same recipe with a different vegetable every time, but they most certainly don’t. There are subtle differences such as the choice and amount of spices, the aromatics, and the amount of liquid used that make each one unique.
This tagine is certainly different. It has a tomato sauce base and its vegetable is not cooked in the sauce but dipped in egg, fried and plated on top of the stew at the very end. This results in more textural contrast and very happy taste buds.
Even though nowadays a tagine refers to any kind of Moroccan stew whether cooked in a tagine or not and whether on a charcoal brazier or a stove, the authentic method, still religiously observed by villagers throughout Morocco, remains unsurpassed. Because of the time constraints of modern life, most people cook their tagine on the stovetop. The traditional method is nowadays a treat reserved for holidays and other special occasions.
I love the earthy flavors a tagine lends to anything cooked within its confines but you don’t need to have one to make this utterly satisfying dish. A heavy-bottomed pot will yield fantastic results as well and cook more quickly.
CAULIFLOWER AND BEEF TAGINE RECIPE
Yield: 4 SERVINGS
Prep Time: 10 MIN
Cook Time: 50 MIN
For the stew
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 large tomatoes, grated
1 large yellow onion, grated
2 garlic cloves, minced or pressed
1 ½ teaspoons ground ginger
1 teaspoon paprika powder
½ teaspoon ground cumin
½ teaspoon sea salt, or to taste
½ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1 pound stewing beef, cut into 2-inch chunks
2 cups water
2 tablespoons minced parsley
For the cauliflower
1/2 cup canola or grapeseed oil, for frying
Salt and freshly ground pepper
1 small cauliflower head, core and green parts removed
Place the olive oil, grated tomatoes, onion, garlic, ginger, paprika, cumin, salt and pepper in a medium pot over medium heat. Sauté until the tomato and onion look a little wilted, 3 minutes. Add the beef chunks and sauté, turning once, 5 minutes. Add the water. Turn up the heat to medium-high and cover with a lid. Cook the stew until the meat is tender and the sauce reduced, 45 to 50 minutes. Remove the pot from heat. Stir in the parsley.
Meanwhile, prepare the cauliflower. Heat the oil in a medium skillet over medium high heat until very hot (350 to 375 degrees Fahrenheit). Whip the eggs, salt, and pepper in a medium bowl. Separate the cauliflower head into small florets. Dip the florets in the eggs. Fry them in the oil, turning occasionally, until golden brown on all sides, 6 to 10 minutes.
Plate the stew. Top it with fried cauliflower florets.
Other cauliflower recipes:
Cream of cauliflower soup
Other tagine recipes:
Eggplant and beef tagine