The Moroccan Carrot Salad recipe from yesterday requires an ingredient called ras el hanout. Some people might wonder what that is, and some people might not be able to find it already made. Ras el hanout is a spice mixture originating in North Africa. It could be considered as the North African version of the Indian garam masala. Ras el hanout is associated mainly with Morocco, but it is also used in the neighboring countries.
You can find it in a spice jar in many grocery stores and speciality markets, but if not, or if you’re crazy like me and love to do these things from scratch, here is the recipe I’ve been using for a while. I’m not sure where it’s from or who gave it to me, but it sure tastes great. You could even go as far as grinding each individual spice before mixing them.
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1 teaspoon turmeric
- 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon ground white pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander seeds
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne
- 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
- 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
Whisk everything together in a small bowl. You can keep this spice blend in an airtight container at room temperate, away from the light, for about a month. You can use it to flavor dressings, you can rub root vegetables before roasting them, you can stir into a couscous. There are so many possibilities for this complex and tasty spice mix. Bon appétit!