Monday, 16 June 2014

Spice Up Your Supper!

Okra con Tamarinde, Baharat & Couscous Ebraico

Okra with Tamarind Paste, Baharat & Israeli Couscous

I love trying out something new, especially if it is some kind of spice... such as my wonderful new discovery, "baharat", which I have often hear mentioned, but never used before myself... Until this evening that is!

I was so thrilled to discover a couple of new ethnic supermarkets at the weekend and the great selection of spices and spice blends they have... And life is too short not to just go ahead and try them out! So that is exactly what I went ahead and did!

The other great ingredient that I have had trouble finding here in Frankfurt, is Israeli couscous, the chunky, chewy and more satisfying big-brother of the light and fluffy kind that I usually prepare... So many good finds all in one store! I am enjoying shopping at the ethnic markets more and more each time I pass them by... There is so much to discover in there!

To prepare this dish I used a couple of mild peppers, A couple of Spring onions, the okra, a tablespoon or so of tamarind paste, a tablespoon of baba rat and a handful of fresh coriander.

There are of course many different versions of the spices mixed to make baharat, but basically it is a blend of black pepper, cumin, allspice, nutmeg, cardamom, cloves, coriander and paprika... Such a pleasant blend of spice!

To prepare this dish, I simply chopped up the green peppers and the onions, as well as the tamarind paste, which I also chopped into small pieces, so that it would become better integrated into the dish during cooking.

I sauté the okra together with the other ingredients, in a little olive oil until they began to brown slightly - for 3-4 minutes and then added the couscous and a good squeeze of lemon.

Next came the baharat and enough boiling water to just cover the contents of the frying pan. I seasoned with salt and pepper, put on the lid and let it simmer away for 4-5 minutes, then turned off the heat completely and left it to steam on for a further 5 minutes before serving.

Once I lifted the lid, the amazing aroma that filled the kitchen was so wonderful, that I had to serve it up and then rush to the table as quickly as possible!

A nice sprinkle of coarsely chopped cilantro was the finishing touch that made this dish into such a satisfying meal... and one that I will definitely try again! Baharat tastes exotic, yet mild and goes well with so many ingredients from what I have read... Well then I shall have to find out for myself!

Feeling hungry, anybody? 

No comments:

Post a Comment