Rockin Moroccan

Things I have:              Fly roommates.

Things we have:           Fun.   Food.

Things we need:            A place to sit and showcase our fun/food.   AKA a dinning room table.

It’ll happen.          Eventually.

In the meantime, Rachel kicked off our first roommie fam dinner by setting a Moroccan theme           …Since uh ya know, we eat on the floor and all.

We also happen to be approaching the end of Ramadan, which is a big deal in Morocco.

We’re definitely gonna pretend that my roommates and I were fully aware of that beforehand.

Family dinner is a nifty idea we came up with ensuring that for at least one point in the week, we’re all collaborating in sync towards a common goal… grub. Then, we can hang around, eat too much and conduct strikingly bizarre conversations.

Happens on the reg anyway. Thursdays just throw some structure in our lives.

Rules basically break down like so:

  1. Each week, we rotate who picks the theme. It can be anything from a culture to a color.  Room for festivity. Love it.
  2. Everyone participates… generally whoever picks the theme does a main. The other two come up with coordinating sides, desserts, appetizers, beverages, whatever.
  3. No one ditches.

And I’m so super excited to share this deliciously fun new ritual with you… because it’s gonna be fun.

Obviously, I’ve said fun like 8 times.

We’re FUN people.     Get over it.

Rachel, our theme-setter, has a thing for lamb.

She also has flaming red hair that I want on my head.           Completely different story.

Anyway, she prepared Moroccan Lamb with Fruit and Honey.               And honey, let me tell you, it was the bomb.

Moroccan Lamb with Fruit & Honey

1 tbsp. salad oil
2 lbs. boneless lean lamb, cut into 2 inch cubes
1 sm. or med. onion
1 tsp. ground coriander
1 stick cinnamon
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1/4 tsp. ground ginger
2 c. water
2 beef bouillon cubes
1 (6 oz.) pkg. dried apricots
1/2 lemon, thinly sliced
1/4 c. mild honey
1 to 2 tbsp. toasted sesame seeds

Pour oil into 4 quart Dutch oven or heavy pan. Add meat, onion, coriander, cinnamon, pepper, ginger, water and bouillon cubes. Bring to boiling, cover and reduce heat – simmer for 45 minutes. Uncover and cook 30 minutes more until lamb is tender.

Add apricots, lemon slices and honey. Stir in gently and cook until fruit is tender, but still holds its shape. Remove meat and fruit with a slotted spoon to a heat proof platter and keep warm at 200 degrees. Increase heat under juices and boil until thickened. Pour over meat, top with seeds and serve. Good with rice and green salad. Serves: 4 to 5.

Amanda is probably our least savvy in the kitchen.

No, she def is. But she’s learning. Like real fast.

Her contribution this week was so legit.

Tomato Parmesan CousCous

2 tbsp olive oil

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 ¼ cups chicken stock

1 5.6 oz package quick-cooking couscous

10 fresh asparagus spears, trimmed, ½ inch pieces

2 large plum tomatoes, seeded & diced

¾ cup Parmesan cheese

Heat oil over medium heat. Add garlic and saute until fragrant about 2 minutes. Add the the asparagus pieces and continues cooking 3 minutes. Add chicken stock and bring to a boil. Sir in the couscous, remove from heat and cover.  Stir in the Parmesan cheese and diced tomatoes.

Hi, My name is Darcy… I make legume salads in ugly plastic mixing bowls. Cause their tasty, and I’m ghetto like that.

Such salad would rock all on its own in say, a pita pocket… woah hey, vegetarian meal.

Chickpea Salad

1 medium cucumber, peeled and diced

1 lb chickpeas (If dry, soak and boil according to package instructions, otherwise drained and rinsed canned peas will do)

1 large Roma tomato, diced

6 ounces roasted red peppers, diced

2 green onions, thinly sliced

6 ounces crumbled feta

vinaigrette

½ cup olive oil

1 tbsp lemon juice

2 cloves garlic

1 tbsp fresh parsley

]1/4 tsp dried sweet paprika

¼ cup red wine vinegar

½ tbsp sugar

For the vinaigrette, place the garlic cloves in a food processor and pulse until minced. Add all other ingredients and blend until smooth. Set aside.

Toss together all salad components except for the feta in a large bowl. Coat with the dressing. Gently mix in the feta. Add salt and pepper to taste.

This one is a stretch.  Like my pants.

I also produced the drank.

Only see, consumption of alcohol is heavily frowned upon in Morocco… but they really dig fruit juices.

Thus, we compromise.

Blueberry Banana Smoothie

3 cups blueberry juice

2 ripe bananas

1 cup vanilla Greek yogurt

sugar to taste (optional)

5 ounces banana rum (or to taste)

10-12 ice cubes

Process all in a blender until smooth. Divide into glasses.

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