This easy tajine recipe is made in a regular cooking pot and topped with the oven-roasted version of my go-to vegan meatballs and Anaheim peppers.
Tajine does not necessarily have to be prepared in the typical Moroccan clay vessel. The word “tajine” is the name for the dish as well as for the vessel. While I really love the taste of it cooked in clay vessels, the cooking pot method is also delicious, and not every home cook owns a clay vessel. It is a recipe that never gets boring, as it is never the same, depending on the season, and the vegetables available. It tastes great with the classic tajine veggies, carrots, potatoes, green peas, zucchini, and pumpkin. There is always room to try new combinations, even with grains or dried fruits, such as chickpeas, plums, and raisins.
As in my other vegan meatball recipe, they are also optional in this meal. But I really recommend giving them a try if you haven’t already in my soup recipe. This is an oven-baked version, the result is a little different but so good! Try making more and freeze some, the next time toss them into some herbs and olive oil and bake them frozen as they are. They turn out a little crispy outside, and soft but chewy and flavorful inside. Just perfect for veggie meals like this!
It is always good to taste your food when you cook and to adjust salt, seasonings, or add liquids if necessary. When you make tajine with potatoes, don’t be afraid of seasonings. Depending on which ones you use, they can absorb a lot of the flavors and the liquids. The best potatoes for tajine are the ones with a medium to low starch content. Which are yellow and red potatoes. The red ones have the lowest starch content and hold their shape pretty well while cooking, the yellow ones turn out softer with more flavors as they absorb more of the seasonings.
If you are someone that loves to cook, chance are you tried tajine already. If you haven’t given it a try, and another one. Then, do it again! You will notice that the more often you make it, the better you will like the result as you start to “feel” the right timing for the ingredients as you try different variations. The common seasoning in Morocco for tajine is Ras el Hanout. Make sure you are using one of good quality. They can be very different in flavor and taste, depending on the ingredients, quality, and freshness.
- Cilantro-Parsley Marinade:
- • 1 bunch of cilantro
- • 1 bunch of parsley
- • 4 cloves of garlic
- • 1 tsp of salt
- • 1 tsp roasted garlic and herbs seasoning
- • 1 Tbsp of Ras el Hanout (Moroccan Seasoning)
- • 1 tsp of chili flakes
- • ½ cup of olive oil
- • 6oz / 170g beefless ground or textured soy protein (340g / 12oz)
- • 1/2 pack extra firm tofu (pressed)
- • 1 Tbsp lemon juice
- • 2-3 Tbsp of the cilantro-parsley marinade (more to taste)
- • 1/2 tsp of salt
- • 4 Tbsp potato starch (sub with rice flour or cornstarch)
- 6 Anaheim peppers - rinsed
- 1 medium to large onion - peeled and chopped
- 3 and 1 Tbsp cilantro marinade
- 2 Tbsp Ras el Hanout
- 1 Tbsp salt
- 1/2 can diced tomatoes
- 6-8 small to medium potatoes - peeled, not cut
- 3 large carrots - peeled and cut into large pieces (see pictures)
- 1 lb Brussel sprouts - rinsed and cleaned (tip of the stems removed)
- 1 cup of frozen peas
- 20fl oz / 600ml water
- large cooking pot
Mince cilantro, parsley, and garlic. Mix with the rest of the ingredients, cover, and set aside.
pre-heat oven to 392°F/200°C
In the bowl, mash the tofu with a potato masher or your hands. Add the beefless ground/soy protein and the rest of the meatball ingredients. Mix with your hands until everything is incorporated into a firm dough-like consistency.
Form the meatballs with your hands and place them on a baking sheet or large baking pan with baking paper. Brush the peppers with cilantro marinade and place them on the baking sheet with the meatballs.
Bake until everything is nicely browned (around 20 min, depending on your oven).
Don't forget to check on the meatballs and peppers in your oven while preparing the next steps.
Cooking the Tajine:
Heat 3 Tbsp of cilantro marinade in the cooking pot on medium heat
Add the chopped onion and sautée until browned
Add Ras el Hanout and salt, stir and cook for another 2 minutes
Add diced tomatoes. Stir, and cook for 2 minutes
Add potatoes as the first layer in the cooking pot, on top place the carrot pieces.
Add the water, place the lid on the pot, and let simmer at medium temperature for 10 minutes
Add the Brussel sprouts and the peas, sprinkle with one tbsp of cilantro marinade (more to taste), and place the lid back. Let simmer for another 10 min. If needed, add some water (the Tajine should have fluid in it, but it is not supposed to be too watery).
Tip: The potatoes should be cooked, but not too soft or mushy, I recommend poking one with a fork, if you don't feel any resistance, they are done.
Serve on plates and top with the roasted peppers and meatballs.