Summer veggie tagine with merguez-keftas

Hot like hell ? Let’s escape. I’ve boarded the flying tagine for a culinary trip to couscous world.

Lots of veggies and grilled kefta-merguez.

Merguez are suppose to be sausages, the name implies the shape of ahem… Well I didn’t bother casing them.

I just prepared ground beef spiced like merguez filling. I made a random spice mix. There is garlic, a good dose of chili pepper and an insane amount of red paprika.

After forming round kefta balls, I pan-cooked them.

Then grilled.

Okra, bell peppers, aubergine, chick peas…

These watery veggies are hydrating, and the spicy balls help bearing the heat. Plus it’s mmmm….

One-pot steamed menu and “petals of potato”

This is one of the dozens of uncommon veggies that makes the refinement of Kyoto cuisine.
This petal shaped vegetable is called yurine (lily root) in Japanese. The taste and texture is closed to potato.

Mine was not pretty, I borrowed a photo of the raw whole yurine. I’ll get others soon.


The site says it is “cultivated all over the world”. Really ? I couldn’t find a Latin name, even less an English translation of the name. It existed in the wild only in Japan and Korea. It is now cultivated in Hokkaido mostly (4 tons per year), and 70% is eaten here in Kansai region.
The season is November to February roughly. So it’s often used to make New Year dishes.
It germinates and becomes purple in spots quickly in the daylight (mine did), so in shops, they do like my grand-ma with her carrots, they bury them in sawdust.

Preparation : Brush and wash the yurine. Separate the petals. They can be cooked in many ways like potatoes, boiled, stir-fried, steamed… but the cooking time is very short.

Here they are steamed, and sprinkled with broken pink pepper.
It’s a “tagine steam”.
It’s very convenient. I use the “steam program” of the oven. I started by thawing chicken breast, steam-cooking it. On top, added the yurine, steam-cooked 2 minutes.

No need for fat or whatever, the chicken skin released a little fat as you can see. Added hakusai (Japanese napa cabbage) for 2 more minutes and reheating the sauce (in a cup on the side).

Steamed hakusai and pomegranate for a warm salad. Dressing was simply raspberry wine vinegar, salt, pepper.

Steamed chicken with the leftover orange sauce.
orange sauce with duck

The drink was persimmon tea, well dry leaves of persimmon I had dried (see there).
If you don’t make yours, Japanese (and probably Chinese, Korean…) shops sell 柿茶 (kakicha), 柿の葉茶(kakinohacha).

I broke the leaves, placed them in the basket, covered with boiling water that I discarded after 20 seconds. Then I added more very hot water and let it infuse 10 minutes. It’s has a lightly slightly nutty flavor. It is said to be rich in C vitamin. It’s caffeine free.

(double serving of chicken)
Cal 508 F13.4g C56.9g P40.9g

Tagine vapeur – Steamed tagine

That’s a sort of steamed pot-luck. Add the things you want to cook longer first.
Favorite shops are closed as it’s a national holiday. I didn’t do shopping, so I found in the freezer some chicken and in the fridge :
Shallots (main flavor of that steam)
Sweet potato (in thin slices)
Edamame beans
Spinack stalks, and leaves (rolled)
A dried chili, a stalk of rosemary. That’s all that is needed.
With yesterday’s bread, and shredded daikon radish (toppings are salt, sansho, and sesame).

(meal with 1/2 of the amount of chicken on the photo)
Cal 461.3 F9.2g C60.2g P36.5g
With all the meat and half the chicken, you can have a very high protein meal.

Magasins fermes pour cause de jour ferie. C’est un melange cuit a la vapeur, les ingredients qui cuisent moins sont ajoutes apres :
du poulet
de l’echalote qui parfume le tout
de la patate douce en fines tranches
des haricots edamame
une branche de romarin, un piment
des epinards en branches, les feuilles roulees.
Avec le pain d’hier, et du radis daikon rape, saupoudre de sansho, sel et sesame.