tastily touring: visiting morocco with a beef and carrot tajine recipe and moroccan mint tea
There is no more dramatic a condition than that of war. War is the antithesis to love which makes war the most extreme backdrop for a love story. We are in awe of the struggle for the very thing that keeps us human and sane during a time that pushes humans to their breaking point. Sometimes love prevails and cushions the harsh realities of war and at other times it succumbs. In either instance, when we read a book or watch a movie, we will cry. We cry when love succeeds through the strength of the individuals and we cry when it cannot endure, when the price of love is too high.
After a small survey of coworkers and friends we found that some of the most popular love stories set during wartime are: Atonement, From Hear to Eternity, Gone with the Wind, Dr. Zhivago, The English Patient, Pearl Harbor, South Pacific and, of course, Casablanca, which must be one of the most popular romantic movies of all time.
Set in Morocco, during World War ll, Casablanca is not only the name of the movie but of the city in which it was set. Casablanca was an important and pivotal port during World War II. The movie brings us to an exotic location, teaming with peoples from many nations, many waiting to find passage to another country, away from war-torn Europe. The stage is set for the story of love and war.
Casablanca is one of those movies that you can watch over and over again, silently “saying” the dialog with the characters. And, we found out, it is a movie that men, out of earshot of other men, will admit to enjoying.
With many couples looking forward to dinner and a movie on Valentine’s Day why suffer the crowded restaurants and movie theaters when you can create a romantic evening without leaving your home.
Bring the exotic flavors of Morocco into your kitchen. Seek table linens that echo the colors of the Moroccan bazaar and create a romantic mood with lanterns and candles. Serve a delicious meal easily prepared in a tajine and perhaps even served in decorative tajines to enhance the mood. Turn on Casablanca, curl up next to your loved one and relax into a romantic evening.
Set up the Shot:
Beef and Carrot Tajine (Australian Good Food Magazine)
1 tbsp ground cumin
2 tsp sweet paprika
1 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp ground chili
1 lbs beef chuck steak, trimmed, cut into chunks
4 tbsp butter
2 white onions, finely sliced
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 large carrots, cut into large chunks
14 oz can chopped tomatoes
2/3 cup pitted dates, halved
2 tbsp honey
1 cup beef stock
1 cinnamon stick
2 cups couscous
2 cups boiling water
1. Combine cumin, paprika, ginger and chili in a bowl. Add beef and toss to coat. Set aside.
2. Melt butter in a flameproof casserole pan or tagine on high heat. Cook onion and garlic for 4-5 minutes, until golden. Add carrot and beef and cook, stirring, for 2-3 minutes, until beef starts to brown. Add tomato, date, honey, stock and cinnamon. Bring to boil. Reduce heat to low, cover and cook for 1 ¾ hrs, until beef is tender.
3. Meanwhile, place couscous in a heatproof bowl. Stir in boiling water, cover with plastic wrap and stand for 5 minutes. Fluff up couscous with a fork.
Moroccan Mint Tea
10 fresh mint sprigs, plus 4 for garnish
3 teaspoons green tea
3 tablespoons sugar
4 cups water
Boil water. Pour a small amount in teapot and swish around to warm the pot. Combine the mint and green tea and sugar in the teapot, and then fill it with the rest of the hot water. Let tea brew, stirring the leaves once or twice, for 3 minutes. Pour tea through a tea strainer into glass teacups to serve. Garnish with remaining 4 sprigs of mint.
Make: NIKON CORPORATION
Model: NIKON D3S
Model: Canon EOS 7D