Spicy Pork, Chick Pea and Apricots Tagine

DSCI1613 Dawn: This is a dish I’ve conjured together with ingredients I already have in – so, no shopping required! 

Andrew: Excellent idea! Busy people have no time to shop midweek. What we have in our stock cupboards and freezers should keep us going all week, or longer!

Ingredients

Serves 4

4 lean pork chops (the fat is removed)

2 onions, peeled, sliced and chopped

240g of chick peas (or 1 450g tin, thoroughly washed)

1 carton of passata

12 apricots, halved

4 carrots, peeled and sliced

400ml of vegetable stock (using a vegetable stock cube)

1 tsp of ras el hanout (or a 1/4 tsp of paprika, cumin, chilli and cinnamon mixed together)

Dawn: Oh, I can smell the tagine cooking as I write! It’s warming – both the kitchen and my soul!

Andrew: Sounds divine and I’m really looking forward to finding out more about this recipe – especially as it’s one made from ingredients you already have in, Dawn.

Method

  • Preheat the oven to gas mark 4, 180°C electric.
  • Seal the pork chops in a non-stick frying pan. There’s no need to add oil as the chops will produce sufficient juices to enable them to brown. Brown both sides and set aside in a large, ovenproof casserole dish.
  • Into the frying pan, add the onions and cook in a little warm water until they have become transparent in look. Add the garlic and cook for a further 2 minutes.
  • Add the passata, apricots, carrots, chick peas, vegetable stock and spices. Bring to the boil. Once reached, transfer the ingredients to the casserole dish with the pork chops.
  • Put in the centre of the hot oven and cook for approximately 60 minutes. At this point, remove from the oven and test to see if the chops are cooked by pushing a fork into one or two: if the fork goes all the way in, they are cooked. If the meat is tender, there’s no need to return the casserole pot to the oven: if the meat isn’t yet tender, return to the oven and cook for a further 15-30 minutes until the meat is tender to your liking. Season with salt and pepper.
  • Allow 60g person of dried cous cous, pre-cooking weight.

Dawn: Tagines are so warming and you can, quite literally use whatever meat and vegetables you have in to create your very own versions.

Andrew: Having herbs and spices in helps make cooking a real treat so whenever you can, buy one or two so you’ll always have these key components in to bring to life even the simplest of dishes. 

Dawn: Excellent tip, Andrew and another one is how easy it is to use dried pulses like I’ve done here with the chick peas. Dried pulses are very inexpensive to buy and easy to rehydrate. We’ll be bringing you how to make chick peas ready to cook with, too so for more tips, follow our blog www.forfoodlovers.wordpress.com with its daily recipe added and our Twitter account @Love_Food_UK. See you there!

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