Moroccan Sweet Potato Tagine with apricots, olives and almonds
This dish elicits the dynamic flavors of a classic Moroccan tagine – savory, succulent and a touch of sweet, laden with just the righ balance of magic-carpet-ride spices. Rassel al Hanout is an epic blend of spices worth seeking out. I purchase it at Whole Foods, although the best yet that I’ve found is from an online purveyor, www.zamourispices.com. If you can’t get your hands on Rasel al Hanout, not to worry, the other spices can carry the flavors of the dish very well.
Yields: 4 to 6 servings
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 shallots, cut in half and sliced 1/8-inch thick
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 teaspoon ras el hanout
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon dried chili flakes
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
pinch sea salt
2 pound sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes
1 14-ounce can organic diced tomatoes or plum tomatoes
1 small bunch cilantro, stems and leaves separated, chop stems very finely and reserve leaves to garnish
2 tablespoons honey
1/2 teaspoon saffron
1 cup filtered water or veggie stock, or as necessary
1/2 cup dried apricots (unsulphured)
1/2 cup green olives
1/4 cup almonds
pinch of sea salt
In a tagine or skillet, saute shallots and garlic in olive oil over medium heat until fragrant and translucent (be mindful not to brown garlic too much).
Add spices- rasel al hanout, cinnamon, paprika, cumin, chili, black pepper and a pinch of sea salt and cook 1 minute or until spices become fragrant.
Add sweet potatoes, tomatoes, honey, saffron, 1/2 cup water or stock, apricots, olives, almonds and a pinch of salt. Cover and bring to boil. Reduce to a low simmer. Cook until sweet potato can easily be pierced with a fork, about 25 minutes. Check after 10 minutes and add more liquid as necessary to prevent liquid from getting too low. If there is too much liquid, uncover and all excess liquid to cook off.
Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Garnish with chopped cilantro leaves.
Store in a tightly sealed container in the fridge for up to 3 days.