Our youngest is in 6th grade, and his homeschooling curriculum includes a social studies book where, with each chapter, he covers a new region. In each region, he has choices of further studying of that country. It often includes where the student researches and makes a meal from the region. We went to the library and found a book on modern Egyptian cooking, Eat, Habbi, Eat. It was actually in the “featured” area of cookbooks in the library.
It’s a great cookbook to get an insight on modern cooking for the region. It goes thru the basics, including what one would have in their pantry in the kitchen. It is a hardcover book, as much for the coffee table as it is for cooking from. The dishes are photographed in color.
Maybe the curriculum wanted traditional foods, but for sure doing a modern take was fun.
Alistaire picked out the Roasted Egyptian Potatoes With Onions And Peppers on pages 116-117.
The dish was a huge success. We served it with roasted chicken. All the boys had second servings of the vegetables. Considering one of them hates onions, he actually said he liked the onions in this dish. The vegetables are deep in flavor, soft to eat, but not mushy. I’ll have to make this again in summer when the produce is coming in from the gardens.
Roasted Egyptian Potatoes with Onions and Peppers Recipe
- 1 can tomato paste*
- ½ cup + 2 Tbsp olive oil
- 2 tsp ground cumin*
- ½ to 1 tsp red chili flakes*
- 1 tsp fine sea salt
- 2 pound yellow potatoes or fingerling size
- 2 large white or sweet onions
- 2 red bell peppers
Preheat oven to 450°.
Mix the tomato paste, ½ cup of the olive oil, cumin (if using), chili flakes, and salt together in a large mixing bowl (do not use plastic as you will stain it!).
(Since we used new potatoes that are thin-skinned I did not peel as directed in the book. The peel has many nutrients!)
(We used round potatoes so cut in half, and then in threes, then chopped into fork size sections)
Add to the bowl and toss gently to coat.
Meanwhile, peel and chop the onions into 1″ chunks, set aside in a bowl.
Seed the bell peppers and cut into 1″ strips, set aside with the onions.
Heat the remaining 2 Tablespoons olive oil in a large cast iron skillet over medium high heat.
Add in the poatoes and brown them for about 3 minutes, stirring as needed with a metal spatula.
Add the onion mix to the mixing bowl to get all the remaining tomato mixture, then add to the skillet. Stir well.
Transfer to the onion and roast for 30 minutes.
I left the cumin out as the boys are not fans of its flavor profile.
My tomato paste I had on hand was infused with herbs.
As for the chili flakes, I used half of what was called (so I used half a teaspoon). While I love spice, I knew I wanted it to be kept balanced for the boys.
As for the potatoes, buy what you can find. In the middle of winter, small bite size potatoes are expensive at $5 for 1.5 pounds, where as I can buy regular yellow potatoes for $3 for 2 pounds.