While I was making this dish I wondered where the tagine originated and who would have eaten it. Thanks to my dear old dad subjecting me to cooking programmes when I lived at home, I have known for some time the tagine originally came from the Middle East. It’s good to know where dishes come from but I wanted to know exactly when this dish became popular and with whom.
So I decided to research tagines. I discover the tagine dates back to 700 B.C. and it appears in a famous book called ‘One Thousand and One Nights’. It’s an Arabic Language story book which dates back to the ninth century. The dish would have been popular amongst nomadic Bedouin and people of the Arabian Peninsula.
The Bedouin people are a group of nomadic Arabics who have historically lived in the desert regions in North Africa, Iraq and the Arabian Pennisula. They are known as desert dwellers. These ‘desert dwellers’ like to add dried fruits like apricots, dates and prunes to give their dishes a unique flavour and taste. The dish is still popular in this part of the world today and now it’s a worldwide cuisine too.
- Sharp knife
- Chopping board
- Vegetable peeler
- Mixing bowl
- Stirring spoon
- Pork x 500g (Uncooked or cooked)
- Onions x 1
- Garlic x 2 cloves
- Carrots x 2
- Courgettes x 2
- Red pepper x 1
- Pitted prunes x 100g
- Tomatoes x 2 400g tins
- Tommy K or Tomato puree x 1 tbsp
- Chicken or vegetable stock x 250mls
- Ground cumin x 1 tsp
- Ground cinnamon x 1 tsp
- Ground ginger x 1/2 tsp
- Ground tumeric x 1/2 tsp
- Dried mixed herbs x 1 tsp
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Honey x 1 tbsp
- Spinach x 4 large handfuls
- Start by peeling and slicing the carrots and courgettes.
- Next slice and peel the onion and the garlic.
- Cut the core from the pepper by slicing the top off and twisting it out.
- Then slice the pepper and put all these ingredients into the slow cooker.
- Now cut the pork into cubes and put into the slow cooker
- If using cooked pork, put it in towards the end of the cooking time.
- Next pour over the tomatoes and chicken or vegetable stock.
- Sprinkle over the herbs and spices.
- Add in the prunes, honey and the tommy k or tomato puree and stir these ingredients together.
- Finally add salt and pepper to taste.
- Turn the slow cooker on high for 4 hours or low for 8 hours.
- Towards the end of the cooking time, about 30 minutes, if using cooked pork add it in now.
- Then five minutes before the end add in the spinach and let it wilt down.
- Serve and enjoy.
Slow Cooked Pork and Prune Tagine is a great dish that my little family really enjoyed. We made ours with left over pork I had from a roast but I know uncooked pork cooks very well in the slow cooker. You can use a cheap cut like the shoulder in this dish. Plus it’s another great meal to make in bulk and store in the freezer. We ate this dish with sweet potato mash and it was delicious. The meal can also be eaten in the traditional way with couscous or even brown rice. However you decide to eat this meal, as always, enjoy.
Do you add dried fruit to your meals and if so, which ones? Let me know in the comments below and please don’t forget to like, comment or follow me. Thank you. xxx