Moroccan Scented Beef Tajine

Serves 3-4

Time requirement: About 45 minutes to prepare and 1½ hours to cook. You will know why it is called scented beef when the aroma begins to waft out of the kitchen. It is the fragrance of the Morocco.

What you will need:

1¼ pound beef cubes cut from the chuck.

¼ teaspoon each of ground cumin, ginger, cinnamon, cardamom, and dried mustard.

1/8 teaspoon ground cayenne.

½ teaspoon kosher salt and freshly ground pepper.

¼ cup olive oil, plus an additional tablespoon.

2 medium onions (about 4 ounces each) cut in half and thinly sliced.

1 head of garlic, each clove peeled.

4 small shallots whole and peeled.

2 carrots (about 3 ounces each) peeled and cut into ½ inch rounds.

1 medium size sweet bell pepper (red, orange, or yellow, 5-6 ounces) seeded, and cut into narrow strips.

2 tablespoons all-purpose flour.

2 cups beef stock.

1 russet potato (about a pound).

1 tablespoon butter.

Preparation:

In a bowl, place the cumin, ginger, cinnamon, cardamom, mustard, cayenne, salt, pepper, and olive oil. Mix them thoroughly. Add the beef and allow the meat to marinade in the oil for 30 minutes. Meanwhile prepare the onions, garlic, shallots, carrots, and bell pepper.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Set the oven rack in the middle of the oven.

Heat a Dutch oven over a medium heat. When the pan is hot, add 1 tablespoons olive oil and place the meat and all the spiced oil in the pan. Brown the meat for 5-8 minutes stirring it occasionally. With a slotted spoon. When browned, take the meat out of the pan to a waiting plate.

Add the onions to the pan and sauté them until they are soft. This will take about 8-10 minutes. If the pan is dry add a tablespoon of olive oil. Stir the onions frequently and use the moisture in the pan to deglaze bottom of the pan. When the onions are soft, add the flour and mix well and stir for half a minute. Add the garlic, shallots, carrots, bell pepper, and stock. Turn the heat to low and return the meat to the pan to sit atop the onions, shallots, and garlic. As the stock comes to a simmer, cover and place in the 290-degree F oven for 1½ hours.

After 1½ hours, thinly slice the potato. Place the potato rounds a top the stew in a ring of overlapping rounds. Cut up the butter and dot the potatoes with the butter. Cook for 15 minutes covered at 350 degrees. The uncover and tuner the broiler on for 10 minutes (high) to brown the potatoes.

Let the dish rest a few minutes. Serve on warm plates or bowls.

. Then serve on warm plates.

m the oven. Allow the stew to rest for 10 minutes. Serve on warm plates or bowls.

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