Seven Vegetable Tagine

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This Moroccan classic makes a superb vegetarian main course. Serve with onion jam and green harissa broth in a separate jug, for each person to help themselves. A bowl of rosewater-flavoured yoghurt cheese or basil tzatziki on the side, although distinctly un-Moroccan, is also delicious. 

Time: 60 minutes

Serves: 4


  • 240g couscous
  • 2 medium carrots, scraped and cut into wedges on the angle
  • 1 small butternut pumpkin, peeled and cut into 2 cm dice
  • 2 small turnips, peeled and cut into wedges
  • 2 small parsnips, scraped and cut into batons
  • 1 small eggplant, cut into wedges
  • 500ml vegetable stock
  • 1 medium zucchini, cut into wedges on the angle
  • 100g chickpeas, soaked overnight and cooked until just tender
  • 4 small waxy potatoes, boiled until tender, peeled and halved
  • 1 tablespoon sweet paprika
  • 1/2 tablespoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 tablespoon crushed dried chillies
  • 1/2 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 tablespoon ground coriander
  • 1/2 tablespoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 cardamom pods, seeds removed, crushed
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed with 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • 100ml olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons rosewater
  • Onion jam, to serve
  • Yoghurt cheese, to serve

Green harissa broth

  • 2-3 tablespoons green harissa, or to taste
  • 400ml vegetable stock or water, simmering
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

If you have a couscoussier, stew the vegetables in the bottom section and steam the couscous on top. Otherwise proceed as follows.

Prepare couscous with aromatics according to the base method. During the second steaming, begin to prepare the vegetables. Preheat the oven to 200°C.

In a mixing bowl, combine all the spices with the garlic paste, lemon juice and half the olive oil.

Heat the remaining oil in a large ovenproof casserole and sauté the carrots, pumpkin, turnips, parsnips and eggplant for about 5 minutes, or until all are lightly coloured. Add the spice mixture and stir to coat the vegetables for a further 2 minutes. Add the stock and cook for 5 minutes.

Add the zucchini, chickpeas and potatoes. Mix them in well then place the casserole in the oven and bake for 20–30 minutes or until the vegetables are tender. Remove from the oven, check for seasoning and sprinkle the rosewater over the top.

When ready to serve, mix the green harissa into the simmering stock. Return to the boil, then taste and adjust the seasoning to your liking.

Pile the vegetables into a deep serving dish and stack the couscous on top. Serve immediately with onion jam, the harissa broth and yoghurt cheese.

Recipe taken from New Middle Eastern Food by Greg and Lucy Malouf
Middle Eastern food is one of the oldest and most sophisticated cuisines in the world. It’s a cuisine that is subtle, elegant and alluring, using exotic spices such as saffron and cardamom. The book is divided into chapters such as Soups, Dips, Small Plates, Large Plates, Bakery, Sweet and Larder, making it easy to find the recipe you’re after. Discover the joy of Middle Eastern cooking for yourself with the mouth-watering recipes that Greg has created for the home kitchen, as he mixes centuries of tradition with modern techniques and flavours for both the home cook and experienced chef. With over 300 recipes included, this comprehensive recipe collection is sure to become a classic.

You can purchase New Middle Eastern Food at

Published by Hardie Grant Books.

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