Thursday, February 11, 2010

Recipes for Moroccan starters

A Moroccan meal usually starts with a number of cooked salads, which are scooped up with chunks of bread. Here is a selection to get you started. Add a dish of olives and you'll have a spread fit for a pasha!

These recipes serve 4-6 as part of the first course.

(fava or broad beans in tomato sauce)

1/2kg shelled broad beans
6 large ripe tomatoes, peeled, seeded and chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 1/2tsp paprika
1tsp salt
sprinking of black pepper
pinch of chili powder
1/3 cup olive oil
1/4 cup chopped fresh coriander

Place the beans in a pot with plenty of salted water, and bring to a boil over high heat. Partially cover the beans and reduce the heat to medium. Cook the beans for about 30 minutes, or until the beans are quite tender and can be popped out of their skins. Drain set aside.

While the beans are cooking, add the tomatoes and the remaining ingredients to a large pot, and stir to mix. Cook uncovered over medium to medium-high heat, stirring occasionally and mashing the tomatoes as they soften, for about 25 minutes, or until a rich, thick sauce has formed.

Add the cooked and about two tablespoons of water to the sauce. Simmer for a few minutes to heat the fava beans, and remove from the heat. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Aubergine Puree

2 aubergines (eggplants) weighing in total around 600g
2 sliced garlic cloves
1/2tsp ground cumin
1tsp paprika
50ml olive oil, plus extra to serve
juice of 1 lemon
salt and pepper
mint or coriander to garnish

Cut slits in the aubergines and insert the garlic slices. Bake in a hot oven for 30-40 minutes until the skins are charred and blistered. Remove from the oven and leave to cool.

Halve the aubergines and scoop out the flesh and garlic slices. Squeeze out any excess liquid. Put the aubergine, garlic, cumin and paprika into a food processor and mix to a puree. With the motor running, slowling pour in the olive oil to give the consistency of a soft dip. Add the lemon juice and salt and pepper to taste.

Transfer to a serving dish. Just before serving, dribble some extra virgin olive oil over the top and garnish with mint or coriander.

Carrot Salad

700g fresh carrots
1 1/2tbs lemon juice
1 1/2tbs oil
1 tbs fresh parsley, chopped
1tsp cumin
salt and pepper

Peel the carrots and cut into rounds. Boil them until just cooked. Drain. Mix in the other ingredients and toss gently. Serve at room temperature.

Taktouka (cooked tomato and roasted pepper salad)

6 ripe tomatoes, peeled, seeded and chopped
2 or 3 large green peppers, roasted, peeled, seeded and chopped
3 large cloves garlic, finely chopped
3tbs chopped parsley
3tbs chopped fresh coriander
salt and pepper to taste
1tbs paprika
2tsp cumin
pinch cayenne
1/3 cup olive oil

Cook all the ingredients in a large frying pan over medium heat, stirring occasionally, for about 20 minutes, or until the tomatoes are very soft. Adjust the heat if necessary to keep the tomatoes and peppers from burning.

Smash the softened tomatoes with a spoon, and continue cooking for another 10 minutes, or until the liquids are reduced to oil. At this point the salad should be well-blended and can be stirred away from the sides of the pan. Serve warm or at room temperature.

See all our Moroccan recipes here: The View from Fez Menu!

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I, too, am here said...

The taktouka looks delicious.

E. Moitas said...

Thanks for the great recipe for beans.
Portuguese cuisine is very similar to Morocco.