Sweet’n’Slow Tagine Chilli

By: Elena Kovakina

Servings: 3-4 (depeding on how hungry you are)

Beef – 0.5 kg (go for cheaper cuts)
Prunes (unsoaked) – 200g

Wet spice mix:
Onion: 1 large
Garlic: 1/2 head
Chilli: 1 medium whole (with seeds)
Ginger: 2 tbsp grated

Dry spice mix 1:
Allspice: 5 grains
Cumin: 1/4 teaspoon
coriander seeds: 1 tbsp
Cardamons: 3-5 whole
Cinnamon: 6cm stick
Black pepper: 10-12 grains
Bay leaf: 2

Dry spice mix 2:
Paprika powder: 2 tbsp
turmeric powder: 1/2 tsp
white pepper: 1/2 tsp
Dry hibiscus: 1 handfull
cayenne: to taste

Red wine: 2 glasses (1 goes into chilli, one goes into chef)

Optional: sweet potato wedges (it was training day for us)

Instructions: Get a nice piece of not-so-fancy casserole beef. Might not work for a steak because of excessive connective tissue, but would do magic for a slooooow chilli that I’m making.

This chilli I made in tagine clay pot – but it can be made in a conventional slow cooker as well.

So, I rendered the beef into chunky mix using chef knife. Might sound as useless effort, but it actualy works for slow cooking. Together with beef chop finely onion, garlic, chilli, add ginger and put your pot on stove.

While it’s heating up, put dry spice mix (all but bay leaves)  into a mortar and give it a bit of beating and grindind. Don’t grind it too much though.

So, put spiced meat mince into pot and simmer on medium fire. I don’t use oil for my tagine, but you might need some for your cooking pot. Keep stirring meat for 5 minutes till it’s no longer red. Then stir in ground dry spice mix. Stir in. Pour in red wine. Put bay leaf on top. Lower the heat to minimum. Cover the lid.

And go to gym. Or somewhere else. Basically, do anything to forget about it for 3 hours or so.

Come back from wherever you went. Try not to faint because of the flavours filling your house. Open the lid, add more iquid if needed and stir in the second dry spice mix. Check spicyness and add more cayene if it’s not spicy enough. Cover the lid again.

Go to movies. Or visit your aunt. Or do something else to forget about the dish for 3 more hours.

40 minutes before serving the dish mix in prunes and put your starch on top. We did it with some sweet potato, it steamed perfectly.

Serve with plenty of fresh vegetables and enjoy. Don’t forget that prunes have stones


Categories: Chili Contest


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