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maandag 16 juli 2012

Egg plants have returned

We haven't used egg plants for ages, here at home. The reason is simple: it's not a much liked vegetable by the majority of my house mates (my dad and my sister because of the taste, my mum by lack of ideas what to do with them). 
But ... I saw them lying in the supermarket, next to the zuchini's and the tomatoes, and I got the feeling I should do something with them.

My first idea was to make a tajine, named after the Moroccan dish prepared in the beautiful terracotta pots. So I took out the tajine from the cupboard and dusted it off. It became evident why it wasn't used before when I started cooking in it: the house smelled of burned oil because of a large tear in the tajine's bottom!

My beloved egg plant and the other vegetables already frying in it were immediately rescued into the safety of another pot. There they cooked further. My idea of making tajine  wasn't a success, but the result is quite alright :)

Ingredients for 4:
- 8 pieces of chicken
- 400 grams canned and peeled tomatoes
- 1 egg plant
- 1 red pepper (sweet)
- 2 cloves of garlic
- chilli flakes
- black pepper and salt to taste
- olive oil
- shoarma spices to taste
- teaspoon of cumin powder
- half a can (small) of tomato paste
- 1 star anise
- 200 grams cousous (semolina)
- fresh parsley for serving

How to:
Cube the egg plant and cover with some salt. Let stand for about half an hour until the saps come out. Rinse the cubes and dry them.
Heat the pot and pour in some oil for frying.
Add the diced pepper and the egg plant to the pot. Also add the whole cloves of garlic.

Once they're covered with a little oil and have fried a while, pour in the canned tomatoes. Cover with the lid and let simmer on medium heat for about half an hour.
Now put the chicken on top of the vegetables. Season the dish with star anise, cumin, shoarma spices and chilli flakes. Also put in the tomato paste.

Put the lid back on and let simmer another hour, turning around the chicken from time to time. 
Taste and season to taste with salt and pepper.

Serve with the couscous (semolina) and some fresh parsley.


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