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Kus - kus, hummus, tazhin - three detailed recipes from Elena Chekalova of

These popular dishes is from North Africa and from the Middle East many of us tried, but here to prepare kus - kus or tazhin houses somehow it was not necessary... By means of Elena Chekalova it became possible. The author of the book “World Kitchen“ claims: Middle Eastern hummus and Arab kus - kus and tazhin - simple house dishes in preparation. It is only necessary to master them.


Paste hummus - one of the strongest namazok in a world gastronomy. By a sort it from the Middle East, but she is trained also in many Mediterranean countries. Hummus to you will be served at any Lebanese, Moroccan, Jewish or Greek small restaurant and, of course, in Latin quarter of Paris. In Moscow it is given now too everywhere - from French to the Uzbek restaurants. Well and, certainly, sell in supermarkets. We tried different banks - nothing was pleasant, some acetic putty. Believe if you prepare it at least just once, you will understand how it is simple and as it is delightful.

However, as a part of hummus one indispensable ingredient which is not always simple for buying, - a takhina is. It is paste from sesame seed, or a sezam. You remember, how in the Arab fairy tales: to seza, open - because sesame pods, having ripened, loudly burst as if doors exotic a peshcherok open. The ready takhina is quite good, be not frightened that it resembles dense oil paint superficially. In Moscow it always is in Indian Spices shop. If you do not find a takhina, it is possible to buy ready hummus in the same place in bank (in it a half is made by a takhina) and to correct it: to add the wiped peas, lemon juice and spices.

It is much simpler to p to buy

the second main component of hummus - peas, round, similar to a small filbert, which in Turkish call “chick-pea“, and in the Middle East - “hummus“. Just the same peas meet in the republics of Central Asia and are called “nakhot“ there. In some supermarkets the name is written in English - chick peas.

Ready hummus is usually spread on a plate so that in the middle there was a deepening. Water with olive oil, strew with small cut parsley, sometimes a paprika, in deepening put pine nuts. It is considered that it is necessary to scoop hummus only pita - thin grain flat cake: from it it is necessary to tear off a small piece and to curtail it like a ladle - the edible spoon will turn out.

For preparation of hummus it will be required by

to p:

Step by step
  1. Peas it is better for li to wet

    since evening. Next morning to wash out, fill in with fresh water and to put to cook.

  2. As soon as will begin to boil, to remove foam, to reduce fire to a minimum and to add a tea spoon of baking soda - ancient cunning that firm bean boiled soft quicker and turned out gentle.
  3. should not Salt chick-pea until it completely is softened, it zadubet not that.
  4. all the same will Cook hour one and a half - two, but it is not necessary to be above it.
  5. can prepare all the rest Only closer to the end: to squeeze out lemon juice and to small cut parsley.
  6. the Boiled chick-pea wash out
  7. again, filter (all water do not pour out - can, still it is useful), then it is the best of all to grind it through a sieve completely to remove a thin skin.
  8. But we are lazy - we send everything to the blender more often: peas, a takhina, garlic, lemon juice, salt, pepper and slightly - slightly kept broth that gentle cream turned out.
  9. Properly to wipe
  10. and even to shake up.
  11. If leaves too densely, it is possible to part still.

What proportions?

different recipes Are. We cook hummus, as they say, by eye, adding little by little a takhina, lemon juice and trying. With takhiny it is important not to be overzealous - otherwise hummus will turn out heavy. We love is sourer also with a tea spoon of a kumin who gives characteristic east aroma.


Tazhin is a feast of the stunning tastes, and we heard from friends and acquaintances more than once that even only for the sake of it one it is worth going more and more time to Morocco. But here believe, this dish, is more right tens of dishes, you easily will make houses of products which buy in our markets or in shops. And the special ware for a tazhin can be bought now in Russia, for example in shops of IKEA too.

tazhin - not only in a special way the cooked food, is still a wonderful pot which berbers - nomads, inhabitants of the African deserts, thought up for suppressions on the elementary coal braziers. And then the Moors fleeing Spain in times rekonkist filled these clay pots with difficult aromas of spices. From there from inquisition also Jews ran and too found a shelter on the Moroccan earth. They added in dishes of sweet and different Mediterranean spices, well later French gastronomic refined all this.

In expensive Moroccan institutions is liked to be told that tazhin - nearly the main embodiment of medieval Mauritian cuisine and haute cuisine of Marrakech, Fes and other imperial cities. Tazhin - the most striking example of slow cooking, slow cooking on small fire mainly in pottery. Meat in these suppressions turns out unusually soft and juicy, and sauce - cream, even caramel, is more often pryano - sweet. In tazhin put fruit, nuts and dried fruits - they give to a dish special east luxury and a saturation refined tastes. It can be the most different combinations: mutton with dried apricots, or with dates and almonds, either with plums, or with a quince and tiny karamelizirovanny lukovichka shallot, or with pears. Often add also honey, but sweet is counterbalanced by sharpness of ginger and red pepper.

Primordial tazhin, it, of course, with mutton: both the ware, and method of slow cooking on small temperature - all this as well as possible softens and flavors even the most rigid pieces. But now tazhina train both with veal, and with chicken, and with fish, and even with a duck - only not with pork, of course (Muslim all - the country). In most cases technology same: in the beginning fry meat and weary onions in the vegetable or peeled butter (the oil calcinated and exempted from impurity. - Editor`s note) then add spices, salt, pepper and water, reduce fire and slowly bring a dish almost to readiness. In the end taste can be corrected new, often sweet additives. Observing a compounding and technology, you will be able to make such suppressions very tasty, even in usual spacious stewpans too. But in the real tazhina they turn out just magic.

actually tazhin - not absolutely a pot, and a deep clay frying pan with a high cover - a tent: the juice proceeding from meat and vegetables rises to the very top, and then falls again, having already connected to impregnate and enrich with new shades all ingredients.

For a tazhin with chicken it will be required by

to p:

Step by step

  1. the Basis of a tazhin we put
  2. 15 - 20 on weak fire, we pour oil, and so far it gets warm, we cut an average chicken on portion pieces.
  3. we Salt them, slightly - slightly we pepper and from all directions we fry till slightly golden color.
  4. Meanwhile in other pan we cook
  5. two huge a quince - directly entirely, having hardly covered them with water.
  6. Saffron-yellow threads we spread
  7. in a mortar, we pound them a pestle together with a salt pinch in powder and we fill in with a half of a glass of hot water.
  8. Small - small we cut a bulb.
  9. the Fried chicken pieces we dump
  10. in a bowl, we cover that did not cool down, and in tazhin, having reduced fire still slightly - slightly, we spread onions, we weary it (we do not fry!) to transparency.
  11. Then we pour out in tazhin saffron-yellow water, we spread polished ginger and cinnamon - sauce is poured by gold and begins to exhale a fragrance.
  12. the Chicken safely comes back to a pot, we fill in it with a glass of hot water - and time, we slam a cover.
  13. On other frying pan we fry tiny lukovichka shallot, adding a little brown sugar. Minutes through 10 they turn into beautiful caramels.
  14. Is taken out from a tazhin of a breast that did not dry up (they are always ready the first), and in other pieces which continue to pine, add still a little bit waters.
  15. It is tried by a fork a quince: already well is punctured. We pull out, we divide into quarters, we clean cores, we cut on segments and we roast them on the same frying pan where there was just a shallot.
  16. Tazhin prepares slowly, mutton - it is more than two hours, well, and for chicken and there will be enough hour.
  17. Before the end already all pieces of chicken needs to take out, mix in honey sauce, to add for balance of salt and pepper.
  18. to Return to
  19. all pieces into place, it is atop beautiful to spread out lukovichka and a quince and to warm up under a cover.

Kus - kus


Kus - kus in Morocco, Tunisia, Algeria, and partly and in Israel - well approximately as paste in Italy, it so often is also called - Middle Eastern paste. But now it is adored everywhere - from New - York to Moscow, it keeps the second place among favourite dishes in France, and on Sicily it was included in general in own national menu. By origin the word “kus-kus“ - berber just “food“ also means: initially it was also food of poor nomads - berbers.

is Done kus - kus of the cheapest small krupka of semolina (a special grinding of flour of firm grades). And any Maghrib family, Arab or Jewish, from Morocco or Algeria, does not think of itself without this dish called by name the grain entering it. And there is always a wish to glance in a strange construction where kus - kus traditionally cooks, - in a pyramid from two pans. In French this design is called couscoussiere. At the top pan a bottom with holes, as in a colander. In it grain also steams out. In lower - broth from a yagnyatina or chicken. Or fishes, as on Sicily. Happens also vegetable kus - kus.

Now outside North Africa process strongly became simpler, and kus - kus sell already steamed, as if already semi-prepared. On a pack and it is written: just add water (or broth), let`s 10 inflate minutes (volume at the same time strongly increases), then salt, season with oil and give with what is in the house. Once we and did, did not try kus yet - kus in small Arab snack bars of Latin quarter of Paris in the beginning, and then in Morocco, Tunisia and Israel.


C steamed kus - kusy everything, apparently, is much simpler, however after the present this, prepared according to the standard instruction that is called just in a throat does not climb. In it there are no main advantages of a dish - fragrant air ease and trembling soul. As if real kus - kus it was gentle, in it as in risotto, in depth there is a tiny tverdenky heart. And when you just fill in grain with water and leave to bulk up, quite heavy just soft, but already dead grain dish turns out. What to do?

Dry grain we pound

with olive or with the peeled butter in the beginning - that each grain received a protective film and did not creep away. And what, ask, to do if there is no kuskusnitsa? We pour out everything in a colander in which we close holes laurel leaflets (when steaming they give one more additional aroma).

If does not have

a pan which diameter allows “to put“ densely in it a colander, on edge of the available ware it is possible to lay a wet towel “to squeeze“ a colander without gaps - he has to sit as densely, as in couscoussiere that steam went not to air, and to grain.

In the lower pan about a liter of broth or water boils. One more liter boils in a small stewpan with the handle. We slowly spill water from a stewpan through grain on a colander, constantly slightly shaking up kus - kus a fork. When all liquid in a stewpan comes to an end, we raise a colander from a pan, we pour a half of broth back in a stewpan and we spill grain the second time, raising it a fork also a little. And so to readiness. On average this process occupies minutes fifteen - twenty. In the end we drive in into grain the main Maghrib mix of spices ras seasoning - el - hanout or we do similar mix. Steamed kus - kus this a little kanitelny way it is possible to prepare for the same lungs as in Morocco, especially if you will find very small grain.

But also absolutely easy way is. Bulked up kus - kus it is possible to strew with pieces of butter and to warm up in an oven where on a bottom the bowl with hot water is put.



For a basic kus - Kusa will be required:

  • of 350 g of small grain kus - kus
  • of 400 ml of warm water
  • 1/2 of h l. salts
  • of 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • of 50 g of butter + 1 tablespoon of oil for frying of pine nuts
  • of 4 tablespoons of pine nuts or petals of almonds
  • at will:

Step by step

  1. the Oven we heat mix of the Moroccan spices to 190 degrees, on a bottom we put a bowl with hot water.
  2. Salt we dissolve
  3. in warm, but not hot water.
  4. Kus - kus we pour out
  5. on a wide frying pan (ideally - ceramic).
  6. Gradually we pour in water in grain, pounding lumps a fork or fingers. We leave for 10 minutes.
  7. after that we rub fingers olive oil and spices (at will). We shake up a fork.
  8. Is strewed with the butter cut on cubes. We cover with a foil and we send to an oven for 15 minutes.
  9. we put a frying pan on small fire Meanwhile, we dismiss a piece of butter and it is gently roasted pine nuts till slightly golden color.
  10. Is pulled out kus - kus from an oven, once again we shake up a fork, we spread on a dish a hill.
  11. we Strew
  12. with nutlets and we give.


For kus - Kusa with sweet mutton will be required:

For a sweet topping of a tfay:

Step by step

  1. Mutton we cut
  2. in small cubes and together with a bone if it is, we put in a pan.
  3. we Pour water so that it hardly closed meat.
  4. Is brought to boiling, we reduce fire to a minimum and we remove foam.
  5. we Salt
  6. , we pepper, we add the cut onions and spices: cinnamon, ginger, carnation.
  7. Is left to cook under a cover to softness - 1,5 - 2 hour (meat has to be covered all the time with water therefore in process of a vykipaniye we add it - certainly, hot).
  8. we add the saffron divorced in water at the end.
  9. we Prepare for
  10. a topping of a tfay. The raisin needs to be wetted in advance and when inflates, to merge water and to allow it to dry.
  11. Onions to cut
  12. thin half rings.
  13. the Saffron (at first to pound threads in a mortar with a salt pinch) razvestand in a glass of hot water.
  14. we Warm mix of creamy and vegetable oil, we spread onions and on average fire we weary a couple of minutes.
  15. we Reduce fire, we add all spices for a topping and - everything we stir saffron-yellow water, we salt and we pepper to taste.
  16. Is covered and we leave to pine for 20 minutes.
  17. we prepare
  18. kus Meanwhile - kus according to the basic recipe. In this case we recommend to make it with almonds.
  19. we Uncover onions mix, we add raisin and medical
  20. we Extinguish
  21. without cover before solidification - about 10 minutes. Onions gain beautiful deep caramel color.
  22. we Spread
  23. kus - kus on a dish a hill, at its top we do “well“ - in it we spread ready mutton, and from above a sweet topping of a tfay.
  24. we Strew all with the blanched almonds.
  25. Separately we serve to
  26. broth - to them kus - kus with sweet mutton water as sauce already on portion plates.

From the book “World kitchen: culinary hits
from all over the world from our products“