For Moroccans, food is a big deal! A full belly is the key to a full and happy mind, and within the framework of this culture; a person takes immense pride in cooking delicious, fresh meals.
1 kilo beef, trimmed and cut into thick strips
1 medium red onion
4 tablespoons olive oil
A little over a teaspoon each ground ginger, turmeric, and ras al hanout
Salt and pepper, to taste A handful of raw almonds
6 boiled prunes, plus about 75 millilitres of their syrup
Slice the red onion and arrange on the bottom of a medium sized tagine. Add the meat and sprinkle with the spices and olive oil. Cook over medium high heat for 10 minutes. Then, add enough water to cover the beef a quarter of the way up and put on the lid. Reduce the heat to medium low and cook for another hour. Check on the tagine halfway through cooking and add a bit more water if it is looking dry. Pour in about 3 tablespoons of boiled prune syrup at this point as well.
Meanwhile, blanch the almonds and fry them until golden brown, about 3-5 minutes. Then drain out any excess oil and set aside.
Once the meat is done, remove the tagine from the heat and sprinkle with toasted almonds. Garnish with the prunes, and then top each one with a sprinkling of sesame seeds. Serve warm with khobz.
To make BOILED PRUNES:
2 handfuls dried prunes 3 teaspoons sugar
A generous sprinkling of cinnamon, a few cinnamon sticks, or both
Method: Toss the prunes into a pan and cover completely with water. Cook over high heat until half of the water has boiled off, about 10-15 minutes. Then, add sugar and cinnamon and continue to boil for another 10 minutes until most of the water has boiled off and you’re left with soft, plumped prunes in a sugary syrup. These are incredibly versatile, and can be added to anything from tagine to an ice cream sundae.