Sunday, 26 June 2016

Pumpkin and apricot tangine

The Age newspaper says that we are experiencing a cold snap right now.  We are eating lots of soups and stews that last for a few nights.  One of these is a pumpkin and apricot tangine that I have had bookmarked for far too long.  It was a hearty stew that is perfect for this weather.

Before I tell you about the stew, let me say that it was great to have a weekend without many plans.  It opened us up to impromptu activities.  Firstly my dad rang to say he and my brother would help with making some cat steps that we had be discussing.  Our cat Zinc is getting old (14 years) and sometimes gets up on the fence and seems unsure of getting down.  We hope this might help.  She seems a bit unsure of the steps but hopefully they will be useful next time she finds herself on the fence.  And if not, then I am sure E will appreciate somewhere to put his cuppa.

Today I read chapters of Harry Potter to Sylvia during the day, had a bike ride and took Sylvia's bike for a ride.  It has been a while since she has ridden her bike what with one thing and another.  I hope we might have some bike riding now that we are into the school holidays.  We found that the back tyre was quite flat and took the bike to the petrol station to pump it up.  Now she is all set.

Sylvia is quite keen to bake.  I hope we might do some baking over the holidays.  Our days are already filling up and these days I have to make sure that there is time to just hang out at home.  Unfortunately she is not into making dinner, though she is quite good at putting together a platter of bikkies, hummus and vegies.

She is very fond of dried apricots but not in savoury food.  I quite like dried apricots in savoury dishes.  It was the reason I was initially attracted to this recipe.  The apricots contribute to the flavour rather than appear as sharp sweet fruity nuggets of flavour.

Like many stews, I enjoyed this more the second day, though I made more of an effort with garnishes the first day.  I wasn't sure I got the seasoning exactly right, because the apricots and pumpkin made it so much sweeter after cooking that it wasn't easy to taste until done when it can be harder to adjust.  However the tagine was packed with lots of vegies and lots of flavour that kept us enjoying it across a few nights.

I am sending the tangine to Jac for Meatless Mondays, Kimmy and Mary Ellen for Healthy Vegan Fridays and Corina for Cook Once Eat Twice

More recipes with dried apricot on Green Gourmet Giraffe:
Apricot and cheese balls (gf)
Apricot chutney (gf, v)
Apricot delight (gf, v)
Black bean and apricot chilli non carne (gf, v)
Curried red lentil and apricot soup (gf, v)
Dried fruit and coconut balls (gf, v)
'Morroccan' chickpea barley salad (v)
Overnight sourdough fruit bread (v)  
Tahini, quinoa and apricot toasted muesli (v)

Pumpkin and apricot tangine
Adapted from Bit of the Good Stuff
serves 6-8

1 tbsp olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
1 carrot, diced
1 red capsicum, diced
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground cumin
500g pumpkin, peeled, deseeded and cut into bite size pieces
400g / 14 oz can chopped tomatoes
1 cup vegetable stock
2 tbsp tomato purée
400g / 14 oz can chickpeas, drained
2-3 large leaves kale, destemmed and chopped
16-20 dried apricots, chopped
1 tbsp honey or other sweetener
2 tbsp harissa
1 tsp salt

To serve:
Flaked almonds, lightly toasted
Sesame seeds, lightly toasted
Shelled hemp seeds (optional)
Fresh parsley, chopped

Fry onion for about 5 minutes over low heat or until translucent.  Add carrot, red capsicum and garlic and fry for another 15 minutes until vegetables are soft.  Stir in spices and pumpkin.  Cover and sweat for 5 minutes.  Add remaining ingredients and simmer for about an hour.  (Note that the seasoning should be tasted at the end rather than the start of simmering because the pumpkin and apricot will release sweetness as it cooks.)  Serve on couscous with nuts, seeds and parsley.

On the Stereo:
Sergent Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band: The Beatles


  1. Looks lovely. And you have reminded me that i too have a Pumpkin and apricot tagine bookmarked in one of the cookbooks on my shelf, can't remember which...Its funny how some people like dried fruit but not in savoury dishes. I can sort of understand that as it took me a while to appreciate. And I agree, stews are much better the day after.

    1. Thanks Shaheen - dried fruit in savoury does seem to divide people - I think I started young with my mum putting sultanas in to curries and stews so I always liked them but I guess there are plenty of people who don't even like dried fruit in sweet food!

  2. I love the steps for Zinc. So cute! I hope it helps her.

    Your tangine looks amazing! I don't think I've ever had a tangine before. What a great idea to add apricots. I'm not always a fan of sweet with my savory food but this looks like it would work really well. :) And I totally agree, stews and chili are great the second day after all the flavors meld even more.

    Thanks so much for linking up with us for #HealthyVeganFridays! I’m Pinning and sharing!

    1. Thanks Mary-Ellen - I am still not sure how different the tangine is from other stews but I enjoyed it

  3. I really like dried apricots in savoury meals and this sounds perfect for a cool snap - I also love the cat steps!

    1. Thanks Kari - me too with dried apricots - when don't they make any recipe taste more yummy!!!!

  4. This looks really lovely! I do like apricots in tagines although my husband isn't keen so I always have to take them off his plate and give myself extra! It's summer here but the weather is not good at all so this would be a lovely warming dish for us! Thank you for sharing with #CookOnceEatTwice.

    1. Thanks Corina - I don't know that anyone would spot the apricots in this tangine - I had expected chunks rather than just a flavour but perhaps it would suit your husband. Hope you get some better summer weather

  5. It's a little warm for stew here, but I actually like the idea of making this and eating it cold. I'm enjoy doing that right now. And we actually have fresh apricots at the market, I bet they would work nicely.
    Thanks for sharing this at Healthy Vegan Fridays - it's being featured this week.

    1. ps. That was very cute of you guys to make the cat steps for your kitty!

    2. Thanks Kimmy - I quite like these sort of dishes warm even in hot weather but I can see the appeal of eating them cold in summer - esp if you take leftovers out for lunch. Am sure fresh apricots would be fun to experiment with. And it was very kind of my dad and brother to come up and do the steps for zinc

  6. Weekends without plans are the best kind! So nice to be free to do whatever you like, and make delicious tagines! The cat steps are such a cool idea.


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