Description

Ras El Hanout is a complex, aromatic spice blend that’s famously associated with Moroccan cuisine. Its meaning translates to “top shelf,” implying that the blend is a best offering in a spice shop. Ras el Hanout is also sometimes called due “mrouzia” to its liberal use in that dish. Try adding some delicious North African flavor to your grilled meats and vegetarian dishes (it’s so delicious in chick-peas and couscous!)

Thanks to CITY News for highlighting our spice blend in this article (with a recipe)!

Recipes:

Lamb & Veggie Kebabs with Lemon and Ras el Hanout
Serves 4-6

Ingredients:
2-4 lbs. of boneless leg of lamb (cut into large cubes)
1/4 cup Greek yogurt or sour cream
1/4 cup fresh parsley (roughly chopped)
1 fresh lemon (cut in quarters)
*Niblack Ras el Hanout (to taste)
Olive oil
Salt & pepper to taste
1-2 lbs. of mixed grilling vegetables cut into cubes such as: mushrooms, yellow squash, red onion, zucchini, eggplant
*Niblack Ras el Hanout is an aromatic North African spice mixture.

NOTE: If you are using wood or bamboo kebab sticks, be sure to soak them in water for at least 20 min before preparing the kebabs.

Step 1: Prep the lamb
Starting at room temperature in a large mixing bowl, combine the lamb, parsley, yogurt, Ras el Hanout and salt and pepper and mix well. Let the mixture rest for at least 15-30 min (or overnight in the fridge) before cooking.

Step 2: Prep the veggies
In a separate mixing bowl, mix the veggies with a splash of olive oil and salt and pepper to taste.

Step 3: Kebab assembly
Using kebab sticks or skewers, thread all the meat and veggies separately onto the sticks. It is important to keep the meat sticks separate from the veggie sticks because they have completely different cooking times. Avoid the urge to layer meat and veggies on the same stick.

Un-skewer the meat and veggies and set them over a bed of couscous and olives. - PHOTO BY JACOB WALSH

  • PHOTO BY JACOB WALSH
  • Un-skewer the meat and veggies and set them over a bed of couscous and olives.

Step 4: Grilling the kebabs

The veggie kebabs take roughly twice as long to cook as the meat kebabs, so timing is important and will vary depending on how rare you would like your lamb. Starting your grill on a high to medium-high heat, cook the veggie kebabs for roughly 10 min on one side, then flip each veggie kebab and add in the meat kebabs. Cook the meat kebabs for roughly 5 min on each side (10 min total) and both should finish at exactly the same time.

Let rest 5 min before serving and top with a squeeze of lemon. Pairs well over a bed of golden couscous with green olives.

 

Moroccan Couscous (With Chick Peas)

yield: 4-6

This Moroccan couscous with chickpeas is flavored with ras el hanout, golden raisins, dried apricots, and fresh herbs. It’s the perfect side dish that packs a punch in the flavor department.

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 shallot, minced
  • 1 teaspoon Niblack Ras el Hanout seasoning
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 1 cup Niblack couscous
  • 1/2 cup golden raisins
  • 1/2 cup diced Niblack dried apricots
  • 1 (15 ounce) can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh mint
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh cilantro
  • 2 tablespoons crumbled feta cheese

Instructions

  1. In a 12 inch inch skillet add olive oil and set over medium heat.
  2. When the oil is hot add the shallot and ras el hanout. Saute until the shallot starts to soften but not brown.
  3. Add in the garlic and saute for another 30 seconds.
  4. Pour in the chicken stock, turn the heat to high and bring the stock to a boil.
  5. When the chicken stock is boiling, take the skillet off the heat and add in the couscous, raisins and apricots and stir to combine.
  6. Add a lid to the skillet and let sit for at about 10 minutes.
  7. Remove the lid, fluff the couscous, stir in the chickpeas, fresh mint, cilantro and sprinkle the top with feta cheese.