Moroccan cuisine has always fascinated me — the pairing of spices, savory, and sweet is so unique and foreign that I’m left craving for more. My first exposure was through an article published in Food & Wine featuring a dish called Chaariya Medfouna – a Moroccan lamb stew with noodles. Sounds like the perfect dish for these colder and rainier Winter days in San Diego…
Until I started reading the recipe. Steamed noodles? Powdered sugar, almonds, and cinnamon over a perfect lamb stew? I was dumbfounded and a little intimidated. So while the recipe still lies dormant in my haystack of recipes, I opted-in (oh boy, I’ve been at work too long) for a less intimidating recipe until I muster up the courage to make steamed noodles and pour powdered sugar over them.
While this recipe adds cinnamon and raisins to a beef chili, there’s something just wonderful and exotic about this chili. This has become a regular on my rotation whenever I begin to go through slow cooker withdrawals or I happened to buy way too much ground beef at Costco.
1 slice white sandwich bread, quartered
2 Tbsp whole milk
1 lb 85 percent lean ground beef
salt and pepper
2 Tbsp olive oil
2 onions, minced
3 cloves garlic, minced
3 Tbsp tomato paste
2 tsp smoked paprika (the recipe called for sweet paprika, but I didn’t have any)
2 tsp ground cumin
1 1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1 can (15 oz) tomato sauce
1 can (14.5 oz) diced tomatoes
1 can (15 oz) chickpeas, drained and rinsed
2 Tbsp low sodium soy sauce
1 Tbsp packed brown sugar
1/2 cup raisins (I used golden raisins)
Zest of one lime
Juice of one lime
1) Mash bread and milk into a pasta in a large bowl using a fork. Mix in ground beef, salt, and pepper using your hands.
2) In a skillet, cook onions, garlic, tomato paste, paprika, cumin, ginger, cinnamon, and cayenne in oil over medium to medium-high heat until vegetables are soft and slightly browned, 8-10 minutes. Stir in beef mixture and cook, breaking up any large pieces, until meat is no longer pink. Stir in tomato sauce, scraping up any browned bits. Transfer skillet contents to the slow cooker.
3) Add diced tomatoes (undrained), chickpeas, soy sauce, and brown sugar to the slow cooker and stir to combine. Cover and cook on high for about 3-5 hours, or until the beef is tender.
4) Let chili settle for 5 minutes, then remove any fat from the surface using a large spoon and break up any remaining large pieces of beef. Stir in raisins and let sit until heated through, about 10 minutes. Stir in lime zest and juice, season with salt and pepper to taste and serve. Enjoy!
On the side: Couscous with fresh mint and scallions
Toast 1.5 cups couscous with 2 tablespoons olive oil in skillet over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned, 3-5 minutes, transfer to medium bowl. Stir in 1/2 teaspoon salt and 2 cups boiling water, cover, and let sit until couscous is tender, about 12 minutes, Fluff with fork, stir in 2 tablespoons minced fresh mint and 2 minced scallions, and season with salt and pepper. Serves 4.
From Slow Cooker Revolution