Saturday, 11 October 2008

Breakfast Tagine with Couscous

Breakfast Tagine - Serving it Up

Traditionalists would probably laugh, cry or at worst, curse but it doesn't stop this version from being terribly heart warming on a cool English evening, when the days are fast becoming shorter and thoughts of a salad for dinner is almost laughable.

I first came across this recipe over at Tamarind and Thyme and I loved the addition of pork sausages to the dish. A great mid-week dinner that can be practically thrown together in a large pot, browned and simmered. In my attempts to keep it 'healthier', I used leaner sausages (minced lamb always being slightly fattier) and threw in a carrot or two (diced and cooked to a soft consistency to keep it off Stuart's anti-carrot radar - I actually had a huge bag sitting in the fridge which I was desperately trying to use up).

Putting it all together:
6 pork sausages
500g minced lamb
4 eggs
Peppers, roughly chopped (I used one yellow and one green - I only like green peppers in stews)
1 large carrot, diced
1 tin of tomatoes
1/2 tin of chickpeas, drained and rinsed to removed excess salt
Large handful of spinach leaves
1 cinnamon stick
1 teaspoon of turmeric
1/2 teaspoon of ginger powder
1/2 teaspoon of coriander powder
1 teaspoon of cumin
1 tablespoon tomato paste
Large pinch of chili powder
Fresh coriander
*Since I had forgotten to stock up on onions and garlic AND was too lazy to go back down to the shops to pick some up, the dish had to without.
**The couscous was mixture of pre-cooked lemon-coriander flavour (hence the green specks in the couscous) and plain - just add boiling water and stir.
  • Heat a large, deep pan (or pot) on medium-high heat. Add enough oil to lightly coat the bottom of the pan. Put in the minced lamb, breaking it up as it starts to cook. Let the lamb brown lightly and the fat ooze out. Drain the fat, keeping the meat in the pan.
  • Add the sausages and let it colour along with the mince. Once coloured on both sides, drain off any excess fat.
  • Add the carrots and peppers to the pan. Let them soften for a few minutes.

Breakfast Tagine - Frying The Ingredients

  • Add the cinnamon stock, ginger powder, coriander powder, cumin, chili powder and tomato paste to the pot. Stir well and cook off the rawness in the spices for about a minute.
  • Pour in the tinned tomatoes and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and let leave to simmer. At this point I cut each sausage into four smaller parts. I could have cut them before cooking but I like how the sausages maintain its meaty juices whilst still linked, which is then released into the sauce rather than cooked off earlier on.
  • Let it simmer for about 20-30 minutes with a lid partially covering the pot. My indication that it's done is when the carrots are nicely soft, the sauce has reduced slightly and is nicely thickened.
  • Add the spinach and let it wilt. Season.
  • Make 4 small indentations into the surface of the bubbling mixture. Break an egg into each. Cover the pan to allow the eggs to cook for 3 minutes. I like to leave my egg yolks runny as they enrich the sauce as they are broken at the table.
  • Garnish with coriander. Serve with couscous (cooked to the directions on the packet).
Breakfast Tagine - Poach the Eggs, Done!

Verdict?
This is a great no hassle mid-week meat feast. Sausage and eggs give it the 'breakfast feel'. The lamb and spices lends a more exotic flavour. It's hearty, warming and great with the couscous, which soaks up that lovely sauce.

Breakfast Tagine - Serving it Up

2 comments:

Su-Lin said...

Wow - glad you liked it! I like couscous too and shall be having it with the tagine next time too!

Luscious Temptations said...

It was great! Thanks for sharing the recipe in the 1st place :)