Saturday, January 29, 2011

Recipe: My kitchen smells divine. Is that sacrilegious?

Beef Marrakesh With Apricots and Lemon

2 hours 20 min | serves 6

I love Saturdays in the winter. It's cold outside and makes you want to stay home. So what's better than spending that time in the kitchen with a bubbling pot sending exotic smelling clouds of steam into the air? 

I've made this ahead and will reheat this evening. I'll be serving it with couscous, which literally takes the length of time it takes to boil water, plus a 5 minute sit.

Just so you know: Add the same volume of boiling water to couscous and a little salt (e.g., 1 cup water, 1 cup couscous). Stir, cover and let sit for 5 minutes.

This makes a very tasty, dissolve in your mouth meal. I've just posted this to so it should be up in a couple hours.

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 1/2 lbs beef, cut into large cubes
2 medium onions
3 garlic, peeled and crushed
28 ounces tomatoes (canned, whole with their juice)
1 cup orange juice
1 lemon, quartered
1 cup apricot, dried (whole)
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon thyme
1 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon cayenne
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon allspice or clove
1/4 cup goji berry (optional, see directions)
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons pepper
2 teaspoons cornstarch
2 teaspoons water

Heat oil in a large dutch oven. Brown beef in batches and reserve. Add onion and garlic to pan and allow to soften.

Add the tomatoes, with their juice, and 1 cup of the orange juice. Bring to a boil. Then add the apricots and all the spices, including the salt and pepper. Add in the beef and any collected juice.

Cut lemon into quarters and stir into the pot.

Add in the goji berries if using. (They are optional, but are high in antioxidants.).

Bring to a boil and reduce heat to simmer. Place cover on to allow some steam to escape and simmer for 2 hours. Remove lemon rinds from pot. Adjust salt.

Thicken sauce with cornstarch mixed with water if desired.

Serve over couscous.


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