Harira (Moroccan Soup)

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This hearty soup is great in winter; filling and flavourful, yet gluten free with no added fat.

Traditional Harira calls for flour mixed with water as a thickener. I used sweet potatoes and carrots to thicken the soup instead ,so this soup is completely gluten free.
Also ,I did not sauté the vegetables in oil , I learned this trick from a Moroccan friend. All you need is to blend the herbs with passata, then add the rest of ingredients, which makes this recipe with no added fat at all.

This soup does not taste any different from the original Harira recipe, with all the goodness of veggies and lentils .

To make Harira you’ll need: 


1 zucchini
1 large carrot
1 large sweet potato,peeled
1 C chopped parsley

1/2 C chopped coriander
1 Large onion, quartered
1 fennel bulb, quartered (the white part)
2 C  passata (strained tomatoes)
8 C chicken stock
1 1/2 C canned chickpeas , rinsed and drained
1/2 C red lentils, rinsed and drained

Spices

1 tsp cumin
2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp each paprika , turmeric, black pepper
1/2 tsp ras elhanout (optional)

To serve : 1/2 C chopped parsley

Directions

– In a food processor; purée herbs ,onions,fennel and passata.

– Pour onion mixture in a large saucepan over medium heat.

– Stir in stock,whole carrot,whole sweet potato, whole zucchini, lentils and chickpeas. Bring to a simmer. Reduce heat to medium-low. cook, stirring occasionally until the vegetables have softened,about 30 minutes .Season with spices. Add more broth or water if needed so that soup do not stick to the pan.

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– Using a slotted spoon, transfer carrots,sweet potatoes and zucchini to food processor. Purée vegetables, then return back to sauce pan. Cover and continue simmering, about 15 minutes.

– Stir in parsley. Serve.

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-Enjoy !

Ancient Flour Krachel – Moroccan Brioche

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Treat yourself this week end to those delicious rolls, scented with anise and orange flower water. The recipe is adopted from Krachel Recipe by 

I substituted a mixture of  einkorn and spelt flour for regular flour, more oil is needed while kneading the dough,as einkorn is a little bit sticky.

I also used a food processor to knead the dough, then kneaded it by hand for 5 more minutes. Using a food processor makes it easier to obtain fluffy rolls in a snap!

Enjoy krachel with butter and your favourite fruit jam, accompanied by Moroccan mint tea. Yummy!

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To make Ancient Flour Krachel you’ll need:

2 1/2 cups einkorn flour
2 cups spelt flour
1/2 cup sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons anise seeds
2 free range large eggs, lightly beaten
3/4 cup warm milk
1 tablespoon active dry yeast
1/2 cup melted butter
1/4  cup vegetable oil
2 tablespoons orange flower water
zest of 2 limes
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1 egg beaten for glaze
Sesame seeds for sprinkling on rolls

Directions
– Dissolve yeast and 1 tsp sugar in milk , set aside and and let prove till bubbly.
– Mix eggs with orange flower water and lime zest.
– Put the flours, salt , sugar and aniseeds into the bowl of the food processor.Pulse few times to mix.
– Turn on the machine and pour in melted butter,oil and egg mixture. Process until the dough forms a rotating very soft ball.
– You may need to add more flour (about 1/4 cup) if dough is too sticky to handle.
– Place dough in an extra  large oiled bowl, knead with oiled hands for about five minutes, until very smooth.
– Cover bowl with a towel and let rise until doubled, about 2 hours.
– Punch down dough and form into balls.
– Place balls two inches apart in a baking sheet lined with parchment paper,cover with towel and allow to rise for 25 minutes.

– Brush balls with egg wash and sprinkle with sesame seeds.

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– Bake in 350 F preheated oven for 25 minutes.
– Let the krachel cool on a wire rack.

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Beghrir (Moroccan Crepes With A 1000 Holes)

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Adopted from Maroc Mama’s,  Beghrir with Nutella and Wild Raspberries .

I have been making Beghrir crepes for years. It is one of my most favourite foods and my family loves them!

I recently tried this recipe and  I loved the results , it is simple and the crepes came out so fluffy and delicious.

I substituted whole spelt flour for same suggested amount of AP flour . I also added a teaspoon of vanilla  to remove the unpleasant egg smell.

Beghrir are the kind of crepes you make on week ends, as they take some time. But believe me, they are  worth the effort.

To make Beghrir  (Moroccan Crepes With A 1000 Holes) you’ll need:

2 cups fine semolina
1 cup whole spelt flour
1 tbsp dry yeast
¼ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon raw  sugar
1 large egg

1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 cup (3 %) milk, warm but comfortable to the touch
2 cups water, warm but comfortable to the touch

Directions:

– Mix all ingredients in a blender and process for about 1 minute, pour batter into a large glass bowl.

– Cover with a plastic wrap and let rest for 30 minutes. Here is how the batter looks like after 30 minutes.

Beghrir batter

– Original Beghrir recipes do not call for buttering the skillet, so I did not , just use a good quality non stick skillet.

– Heat skillet on medium heat until hot. Ladle 1/4 C of batter into hot skillet and cook for about 3 minutes on one side. You will notice bubbles forming at the top of the crepes.

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– Lay crepes in a single layer on paper-towel lined sheet.

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– Serve with a mixture of melted butter and warmed honey, great with Moroccan mint tea.

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Moroccan Meatballs & Poached Eggs Tajine

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This Moroccan dish is a delicious way to enjoy meatballs. I did not have a tajine ,so I cooked it in a cast iron skillet.
You can make extra batch of the meat balls in sauce, simply reheat and crack the eggs over just before serving.

To make Meatballs & Poached  Eggs Tajine you’ll need

For the meatballs:

1 Ib ground beef
1/2 bunch chopped parsley
1/2 bunch chopped coriander
1 large onion minced
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground pepper
1 tsp each ; cumin,ginger,paprika.

For the sauce:


1 (14 ounce) can whole peeled tomatoes
1 large onion, minced
2 cloves of garlic , minced
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground pepper
1 tsp each ; cumin,ginger,paprika.
1/2 C chopped parsley
1/2 C chopped coriander
4 large eggs
2 Tbsp olive oil

Directions

– To make the meatballs: in a large bowl, combine ground beef with onions,parsley and coriander. Add spices and mix.
– Form into balls , the size of a walnut, set aside
– To make the sauce: blend tomatoes in a blender, set aside

– Heat the olive oil in a large Moroccan tajine or a large skillet, add onions and garlic,fry till yellowish.

– Stir in tomatoes, parsley ,coriander and spices.
– Bring to a boil. Add meatballs and simmer on low heat till meatballs are done.
–  Make space for the eggs. Crack an egg into each hole. Cover and cook for 5 minutes.
– Serve with Moroccan bread.

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Karantika (Gram flour Skillet)

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Karantika is an Algerian dish , served in some regions in Morocco as well. Gram flour (ground chick pea flour) is a main ingredient for making Karantika. It’s simply gram flour , eggs and water. So it’s gluten free and dairy free.

I knew this dish by chance as I was invited few weeks ago to a picnic, I knew  eating outside will be challenging for me as I no longer eat hybrid wheat products.I was afraid I’ll have to spend the day on salad. One of my friends introduced the dish she made thinking it might sound not appealing  if I know it’s made of gram flour, it was Karantika. I was so releifed.  I tried it and I just loved it, it’s delicious and so filling .Few pieces with some salad is more than enough to satisfy a good appetite.

My friend’s recipe is available on her facebook page @ cuisine – La MeÏda (it’s in french though)
There was no problem with desert ,as I brought home made einkorn brownies that every body loved specially the kids. I Will post it soon on the blog.

I hope you’ll try this dish and like it . Please do share it with friends you know are on gluten free diet. It’s worth to try.

To make “Karantika” you’ll need

1 C gram flour (ground chick pea flour).

3 C water.
2 large eggs beaten (I use organic free run eggs).
1/2 tsp vinegar.
1/2 C olive oil (you can use vegetable oil).
2 tsp salt.
1 tsp ground cumin.

Direcions

– Mix all ingredients except ground cumin.
– Pour into a 9″ inch square pan ,brushed with butter
– Bake in preheated 350F oven for 30 miuntes.

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– Sprinkle ground cumin allover Karantika.
– Let cool 10 minutes to hold its shape before cutting .
– Serve with salad , drizzle with some hot sauce if desired.

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– Enjoy.