A Simple Vegetable Tagine

Ras el hanout is a spice blend from North Africa and is available in most ethnic food stores. There is nothing as simple as adding a tablespoon of this mix to some stock when preparing a vegetable stew or tagine, as they are known in Morocco. My ras el hanout came from a friend who visited Morocco and it’s the perfect mix with only a hint of cinnamon adding sweetness to the stew. It is burnt orange in colour but there are variations on this, so do try to find the dark blend and not the yellow blend as there are flavour differences.

There is little or no effort involved in making this tasty meal, chopping an onion and peeling a couple of carrots is as much as it gets but your efforts, minimum as they are, will be rewarded with this filling and warming meal. You can use whatever veggies you have left in your fridge, courgette and aubergine work really well. My top tip for this is to be sure there is enough for the next day as it is so much better the day after.

tagine1

What you’ll need: (serves 6)

  • 1 onion, roughly chopped
  • 4 cloves of garlic, finely diced
  • 500g of baby potatoes, skin on and quartered
  • 4 large carrots, peeled and cut into large chunks
  • 1 small butternut squash or pumpkin, peeled and cut into bite sized chunks
  • 1 can of chickpeas rinsed and drained
  • a little coconut oil
  • 2 tablespoons of ras el hanout
  • 500ml of veg stock
  • 1 tin of chopped tomatoes
  • salt to taste

tagine2

Method:

  1. Heat a little coconut oil in a large pot and add the onions. Cooke over a medium heat for a couple of minutes before adding the garlic. Continue to cook for a further five minutes before adding the spice mix. Stir well to make sure there are no lumps, the aroma will start to fill the room.
  2. Add all of the veg to the pot along with the tomatoes. Stir gently, making sure all of the veg is coated in the aromatic mix.
  3. Add 500ml of veg stock and bring to the boil. Reduce to a simmer, cover and cook for about 40mins. If it’s getting a little dry you can add some more water a little at a time.
  4. Season with some salt.

Share and enjoy!

If you try this dish at home please take a photo of it and tag @thetinyvegankitchen on Instagram or@thetinyVK on Twitter I’d love to see them xTx

Melanzane alla Parmigiana (Aubergine with Parmesan)

I love Italy, I love everything about it; the architecture, the language, the animated ways of communicating. But I especially love the rituals involved around eating in this stunning country.

7

This naturally gluten free dish is one of the first that I cooked on a culinary trip to Lazio, a number of years ago. I guess you could call it a vegetarian lasagne that I’ve veganised. It’s hearty and meaty, its packed with flavour and it’s made in one pot!

I’ve made a few changes to the construction of this dish as I found the layering-lasagne-type method difficult to serve up without it looking like mush on a plate. This new way takes a little more time but it looks so much better served up now so it’s worth it. If you have kids, get them on board with the making, it’s easy and fun!

Now, instead of layering strips of aubergine, I create little rolls:

Involtini di Melanzane alla Parmigiana! Buonissima!

9

What you’ll need: Serves 4-6

Method:

Preheat your oven to 160°C. Cut the aubergines length ways into 0.5cm strips. Brush a large oven tray with some olive oil and arrange the aubergine slices. Brush the tops of the aubergines with a little more olive oil and gently cook until they are soft.

1

While the aubergines are cooking you can cut the tomatoes into 1cms lengths, dice the vegan pizza cheese and grate the vegan parmesan cheese so that you’re all set up for rolling.

Remove the aubergines and allow to cool. In the meantime spoon some of the basic tomato and basil sauce onto the bottom of a casserole dish.

2

Now it’s time to make the rolls, gather up the kiddy troops and set each one a work station…or else you could just do it yourself. Lay each strip of aubergine down with the widest part closest to you. Place one basil leaf on top, followed by a slice of tomato, some cheese and season well with salt and pepper. Now roll the aubergine strip away from you encasing the ingredients inside.

3

4

Arrange in the casserole dish leaving a little space between each one. When the dish is full cover with more of the tomato and basil sauce and finish with some grated cheese.

10

Place in the oven and cook at 180°C for about 30 minutes or until the top is golden.

8

Share and enjoy!

If you try this dish at home please take a photo of it and tag @thetinyvegankitchen on Instagram or @thetinyVK on Twitter I’d love to see them xTx