Quick question: Could you name 5 facts about Tunisia or Tunisian cuisine? I sure couldn’t, before this episode, and to be 100% honest, as embarrassing as this is, I’m not sure i would have accurately located it on a map!
A few weeks ago, I shared a recipe from a guest that was named after Tunisia. I felt uncomfortable sharing this recipe, because the guest wasn’t Tunisian, and I couldn’t verify if the recipe had any real basis in authentic Tunisian cuisine. In the end, I kept the name, but asked in the blog post that if any Tunisian read the post, he or she would reach out and educate me about Tunisian culture!
Well, Elyes Taleb, a native Tunisian who now lives in Paris with his wife and baby son, found that post. He was so kind and generous to reach out to me and offer to share more about the culture and cuisine of his country. At his suggestion, we focus the conversation around Oula, a harvest ceremony celebrated in the north of Tunisia in mid to late summer. At this ceremony, the women prepare provisions for the winter months, especially couscous. The high point of this tradition is the lunch they prepare from the newly formed and preserved couscous. So not only has Elyes taught me about this history, culture, and cuisine of Tunisia, he has also taught me that we’ve been cooking couscous all wrong all these years!
Listen Now to Elyes Taleb Teach Us About Tunisia & Couscous
Highlights of Tunisia, Couscous, and The Oula Ceremony
- Is a Tunisian Orange Cake really Tunisian?
- The Mahgreb & the Berber people group
- North African - and specifically - Tunisian cuisine
- Tunisian & Italy
- Geographic regions in Tunisia
- How to make couscous
- The Oula ceremony of preparing coucous
- Steaming couscous 3 times
[lt_recipe name="Tunisian Couscous with Goat & Harissa Sauce" servings="8" prep_time="30 MINUTES" cook_time="60 MINUTES" total_time="90 MINUTES" difficulty="Easy" summary="A flavorful couscous with vegetables and goat, slowly cooked over a deep red Harissa sauce." print="yes" ingredients="700 gr of couscous;500 gr of goat kid meat;200 gr of soaked chickpeas;1 chopped big onion;250 gr of carrots;250 gr of potatoes;40 ml of vegetable oil (option olive oil);2 tablespoons of tomato paste;1 tablespoon of harissa;½ a teaspoon of ground red pepper ;½ a teaspoon of spices (Ras el Hanout);black pepper and salt" ]1. Preparation:;Prepare the meat and cut it into equal pieces, then season it with black pepper and salt and left aside. Rub the carrots and cut it in half. clean up and peel the potatoes;;2. Starting up the red sauce:;Heat the oil in a closed pan and fry the pieces of meat in it for 2 minutes with the chopped onion, then add the soaked chickpeas. Add the tomato paste dissolved in a large cup of water, harissa and the ground red pepper and leave the mixture to boil for about ten minutes, then add the pieces of carrots, and submerge with a liter and a half of water. ;;3. Prepare and start steaming the couscous: ;Sprinkle the dry couscous with cold water gradually without excess, mix gently. As soon as the water is absorbed and the couscous grains are swelled up, start steaming the couscous for the first time for no more than 20 minutes over the boiling sauce.;;4. Second round Steaming:;Place the couscous pan on top of a deep saucepan or on a similar vessel, use around 30 to 40 ml of cold water and pour it over, leave it like this for some time until it drips completely. Then pour the couscous into a wide bowl, separate its grains from each other with a spoon. ;Add the peeled potatoes to the sauce and pour in the pot a quantity of hot water to return the stock to its original size. Start steaming the couscous again about half an hour in the same manner. ;;5. Final Step;When the couscous is cooked, it is placed in a bowl, to be watered with the broth (the red sauce) after adjusting its seasoning.;;6. Presentation: ;Placing the couscous in the serving bowl, levelling its surface is levelled and arranging the pieces of meat on top and around the chickpea’s units, then decorated with cubes of potatoes.[/lt_recipe]
How To Contact Elyes Taleb
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