"We are delighted to include an incredible vegetable tagine in our Food Safari Earth series, this recipe from chef Aziz Bakalla who grew up in the north west of Morocco and remembers preparing artichoke for family meals. Artichokes are a member of the thistle family and are believed to have originated in North Africa. Peeling the outer layers of the artichoke and, with a teaspoon, scooping out the choke is a relatively quick and easy job. This is best made in a tagine and cooked over charcoal but is so delicious it can be made on a stove top using a deep shallow pan." Maeve O'Meara, Food Safari Earth
Celebrating the artichoke, the basis of this dish is the chermoula, full of exotic spices, fresh herbs, chilli, garlic and ginger.
- 8 globe artichokes
- 1 lemon, halved
- 400 g green peas in the pod, shelled
- 600 g tomatoes, roughly chopped
- 4 Desiree potatoes, cut into fine wedges
- 2 tsp ground turmeric
- pinch saffron threads
- 3 tsp sweet paprika
- 1 tsp ground coriander
- ½ tsp ground cinnamon
- ½ tsp ground cardamom
- 2 tsp ras el hanout
- 1 tsp chilli powder
- 1 small knob ginger, finely chopped
- 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 1 small red chilli, seeded and finely chopped
- ⅓ bunch parsley, roughly chopped
- ½ bunch coriander, roughly chopped
- 1 red onion, finely sliced
- 125 ml (½ cup) extra virgin olive oil
- salt and freshly ground black pepper
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
To prepare the artichokes, working one at a time, snap off all the tough outer leaves until you reach the pale yellow leaves. Cut off the top third of the artichoke using a serrated knife. Trim the stems to 2-3 cm long. Carefully trim the top and sides of the artichoke, being careful not to damage the heart. Using a teaspoon, scoop out and discard the fibrous choke in the centre. Rub the cut surface of the artichoke with lemon, then squeeze the remaining lemon into a large bowl of water and drop the artichokes into the acidulated water as you go to prevent them browning.
For the chermoula, place all the ingredients in a bowl and stir to combine well.
Spoon a couple of tablespoons of the chermoula into the base of the tagine. Add half the tomatoes and all the potatoes. Mix 1 tablespoon of the chermoula through the peas and add to the tagine. Add the remaining tomatoes.
Drain the artichokes and cut in half if large, then mix with the remaining chermoula. Add to tagine, making sure all the vegetables are evenly distributed. Rinse out the bowl containing the chermoula with 125 ml (½ cup) water and pour the liquid into the tagine. Cover with the lid and cook over charcoal for 1–1½ hours until the artichokes are tender.
Photography by Sharyn Cairns. Styling by Lee Blaylock. Food preparation by Emma Warren. Creative concept by Belinda So.