While I was enjoying my ossobuco tagine , the whole wheat couscous that I served it on reminded my of quinoa and that sent mind down the path of using quinoa in a Moroccan style dish. At first I was thinking of just serving a tajine on some quinoa but why not add the quinoa directly to it so that it has more time to absorb all of the amazing flavours?
After the large holiday meals I wanted to go with something a little on the lighter side and since Spring has not blessed us with fresh local produce yet, I went with butternut squash which is still available. To that I added chickpeas which when combined with the quinoa would provide an ample amount of protein. Next up was a blend of warm spices, a touch of heat from some harissa, some sweetness from honey and raisins, some saltiness from olives and some brightness from cilantro and homemade preserved lemons .
I still felt that the meal was missing something green so I served it topped with sauteed swiss chard and a dollop of cilantro yogurt. I could not help but be reminded of a burrito bowl which led me to use try the leftovers in burrito form which along with a bit of crumbled feta was another great way to enjoy this dish.
Moroccan Butternut Squash, Chickpea and Quinoa Tagine
This butternut squash and chickpea ‘tagine’ with quinoa has an amazing blend of spices, flavours and textures.
- 1 tablespoon oil
- 1 small onion, diced
- 1 tablespoon garlic, grated
- 1 tablespoon ginger, grated
- 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 cup quinoa, rinsed
- 2 1/2 cup vegetable broth, or chicken, or water
- 1 (19 ounce) can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- 1 tablespoon harissa
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1/4 cup raisins
- 1/4 cup olives, coarsely chopped
- 1/4 preserved lemon, pith removed and diced
- salt and pepper to taste
- 2 cups butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cut into bite sized pieces
- 1 handful cilantro, chopped
- Heat the oil in a pan.
- Add the onion and saute until tender, about 5-7 minutes.
- Add the garlic, ginger, turmeric, cumin, coriander, cinnamon, and cayenne pepper and saute until fragrant, about a minute.
- Add the quinoa, broth, chickpeas, harissa, honey, raisins, olives, preserved lemon, salt and pepper, bring to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer, covered, for 10 minutes.
- Add the butternut squash and continue to simmer, covered, until tender, about 10 minutes.
- Mix in the cilantro and remove from heat.
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