Moroccan Kemama tagine with sweet onions and tomatoes
I have previously posted a variation of this recipe and explained what is the method of cooked called kemama or “binareen” is all about as far as the cooking from the Maghreb (Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia) is concerned. I would like to redirect you the latest before getting started with this recipe.
Now this onion and tomato version of Kemama is my favourite. It’s juicy, subtle and so delicate. The smell in the kitchen is so enchanting and aftertaste once eaten can’t be described. Although this tagine has sugar (or honey) as part of the ingredients but it’s actually not sweet. If you think about the tomato being a fruit, the onions being sweet, well that little bit of cinnamon and sugar are just highlighting this attribute without pushing it too far thanks to the savoury sauce. When the tagine is ready to be served, I can’t stop spooning the sauce and literally drinking it before it gets to the table.
|A good-looking Kemama tagine with tomatoes and onions. (Credit: Choumicha Achafai, Saveurs & Cuisines du Maroc, N 25)|
Today, I have used 1/2 a baby chicken and I cooked the recipe in a tagine from start to finish. The second cooking part was done in the oven to accommodate my living style (I wish I had a corner where I could cook it the old way).
Prep: 15 min – cooking: 1 hour – baking : 20 min
- 1/2 baby chicken ( you may use a whole baby chicken or replace with red meat but adjust the time)
- 1 small yellow onion for the sauce
- 1 medium-size yellow onion for the topping, sliced (choose good sweet onions)
- 3 medium-size tomatoes, peeled and sliced choose good quality tomatoes
- 1 garlic clove, crushed
- 1 handful of parsley and coriander to make a small bouquet (optional)
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 2/3 tsp of turmeric
- 1 tsp of ground ginger
- 1/2 tsp of ground white pepper
- 1 tsp of sea salt or salt to taste
- 1/4 tsp of smen (Moroccan cured aged clarified butter), optional
- 1 tbsp of olive oil and 1 tbsp of vegetable oil
- 1 tsp of honey
For the finishing touch
- 2 tbsp of sugar ( I used 1 leveled tablespoon)
- 1 tsp of cinnamon
Cook for 1 hour over medium/low heat. If the tomatoes have fallen put them back on the top. The sauce should be nicely reduced after this cooking step.