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Tunisian Recipes

Tunisian Lamb Couscous for 4

900g/2lb Shoulder or leg of Lamb, cubed
Large Onions, chopped
tbsp Olive Oil
2  tbsp Tomato Paste
tsp Harissa (or more to taste)
clove Garlic, crushed
2 small Capsicums (sweet pepper), chopped
Turnips, chopped
Carrots, chopped
400g/14oz Potatoes, diced

To serve
400g/14oz Couscous, cooked
Parsley , freshly chopped
2 Lemons, cut into wedges

Heat the oil in a large saucepan, add the lamb and onions and brown on all sides.
Add the tomato paste and Harissa and cook for 5 minutes stirring constantly.
Add the peppers mixing well then reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes.
Add the remaining vegetables plus enough water to cover by 7.5cm/3 inches and continue to cook for a further 1 hour.

Serve over the cooked couscous garnished with the chopped parsley and lemon wedges.

Image source: Flickr



Samsa  Almond Sesame Pastries  

6 oz Sugar 175g
10 oz Water 300ml
1  tbsp Lemon Juice
10 oz Ground Almonds 275g/
2 tsp finely grated Orange Zest
1 tsp ground Cinnamon
½ tsp  Ground Allspice
4  Sheet Phyllo Pastry
Olive Oil, for brushing
1  tbsp  toasted Sesame Seeds

Image source: Flickr

Preheat the oven to 350ºF / 180ºC.

Place the ground almonds, orange zest, cinnamon, allspice and 2oz/50g of the sugar in a large mixing bowl and mix together using your hands.

Brush one sheet of the pastry with olive oil, keeping the remaining pastry covered with a damp cloth so it doesn't dry out. Cut the oiled sheet into half widthways then into 3 strips lengthways. You should end up with strips which are about 4"/ 10cm wide by 8"/ 20cm long.

Place a spoonful of the almond filling at the bottom of each strip, fold the sides over the filling then roll the pastry up along its length. Brush the end of the pastry with a little oil and seal then brush the roll with oil and place on a baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining pastry and filling.

Bake the pastries for 15-20 minutes until crisp and golden.

Meanwhile, place the water and 4oz/100g of the sugar in a saucepan and heat gently, stirring, until dissolved.

Add the lemon juice, bring to the boil and continue to boil rapidly for a few minutes or until syrupy. Remove from the heat and allow to cool a little.

Once the pastries are cooked, remove from the oven then using tongs, dip them into the hot syrup and leave for about 3 minutes so the syrup soaks into the pastries. Only do few at a time.

Remove the pastries from the syrup, transfer to a plate and sprinkle generously with sesame seeds. Allow to cool before serving.


Makes 24

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