Look at the size of this beauty, from our 2014 harvest! It’s a ‘rouge vif d’Etampes’.
Tonight in our house it will be vegetable tagine, including a successor of this one (I save the seeds).
It’s so simple. Tagine is basically a Moroccan spicy stew, traditionally cooked in a clay pot. Usually there’s a dash of sweetness; the squash will provide that, as would sweet potatoes; some people add a little honey or eg maple syrup; I like to add a few dried apricots. Here’s a recipe for you.
Winter Vegetable Tagine
INGREDIENTS (3-4 servings):
2 leeks or 2 onions
Two big potatoes diced (big chunks)
Three carrots diced (big chunks)
1 small butternut squash or half a bigger red one, either prebaked or diced (big chunks) (I bake a whole squash, pricked, then scoop out flesh and freeze it)
Any other veg to taste, eg root veg, courgettes, peppers, aubergines
Optional (protein): canned chickpeas or beans
2-3 tbsps olive oil
Cup stock if more liquid needed; otherwise veggie stock cube or Vecon
Small handful dried apricots if liked
Juice of half lemon
2 cloves of garlic finely chopped or minced
3 dessertspoons of harissa or 1 tsp chopped or dried chilli (less if you don’t want it hot)
1 tbsp fresh ginger root, minced or grated
1 tsp crushed coriander seed
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp of turmeric
salt & black pepper to taste
Optional to garnish:
1 tbsp of chopped parsley
1 tbsp of chopped mint
Almonds or cashews (protein)
Dry-toast the dried spices for a minute or two, then add oil, and sauté onions/leeks till soft. Add garlic and ginger. Add other veg and spices and simmer gently 10 minutes.
Add lemon juice and tin of tomatoes. At this point add stock if needed, or stock cube (etc) anyway, and apricots.
Simmer on a low heat for around 20-30 minutes. Taste and season.
Serve over rice or couscous with greens on the side (I love rainbow chard – the colours of the whole thing are heartwarming); garnish with parsley and mint if liked. Some people add yogurt, or a vegan equivalent (Coyo is by far the best – yogurt from coconut! – but juicy on food miles and expensive)