Monday, March 11, 2013

Cooking With Frank: Egyptian Spice Sauce

This is a recipe we created yesterday for Sunday dinner, it's so easy to make, and tasty, it's hard to say it was a creation. Of course the sauce can be used with beef, or wild game. Personally, it's probably too heave for chicken and fish, but you can always try it (just add more oil, or better yet butter).

This recipe requires a dry-rub marinade that will take at least 12 hours. Also recommended is a immersion blender, but a regular blender will also work.

Egyptian Spiced Country-Style Pork Ribs
1 1/2 - 2 pounds of country-style pok ribs
1 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
1 medium yellow onion, thinly sliced
1/4-1/2 cup red wine
1 quart of stewed tomatoes
1 Tbsp Egyptian Meat Spice (or to-taste)
Course Sea Salt, to-taste
Fresh ground pepper, to-taste

The Dry Rub:
Season meat with salt, and rub all sides of meat with Egyptian Meat Spice mixture. Place in large plastic bag, or container, and place in fridge for at least 12 hours (the longer the better).

The Implementation:
Preheat oven to 350 °F.

Put olive oil in a pan (not non-stick) heated over medium head. Add sliced onions and sauté for no more than two minutes.
Place the pork over the top of the onions and sear each side of the pork until darkly browned.

After the pieces of meat are browned on all sides remove pork from pan and set aside.

Deglaze* pan with red wine. Once the bits of meat and onions are loosened from the bottom of the pan add the stewed tomatoes, spice mix, and salt.

Place meat back into the pan with the other ingredients, cover pan with tin foil and place in over for one hour. After one hour turn the meat and place back in the oven for about  30 minutes. Depending on the thickness of the pieces of meat, you may want to keep it in the oven longer, use your own judgement.

Remove pan from oven and once again set aside the meat, this time tent beneath tinfoil to keep it warm.

In a bowl, or blender jar, blend the liquid from the pan to make the sauce smooth. Return sauce and meat to pan, and over medium heat reduce the sauce mixture to desired thickness.

Plate, eat and enjoy!

*Deglaze: A technique of removing/dissolving bits of food browned to the bottom of a pan by slowly adding a small amount of liquid to the hot pan, and scraping and stirring the bits from the bottom of the pan

Suggested Accompaniments:
Sour Cream and Chive Mashed Potatoes
Roasted Asparagus

Egyptian Spiced Country-Style Pork Ribs, Sour Cream and Chive
Mashed Potatoes, and Asparagus Roasted
in Tuscan Herb Extra Virgin Olive Oil 
Alright, what is Egyptian Spice, you ask.

Egyptian Spice is a automatic spice mixture used to flavour meats. It's very strong, and it's used in Egypt to cover up the smell and taste of meat that is going bad or rancid.

Gross, right? Meat going so bad you actually have to heavily spice it to eat it. They actually have poor sanitation and food standards in much of Egypt (see our travel journals from 2009 for more: Cairo, Egypt / Alexandria, Egypt), to say "poor standards" is an understatement though, "appalling" is more accurate; but the spice they use is beautiful, and the taste is really unique.

While the spice we brought back from our trip to Egypt had no ingredient list, we managed to find some comparable mix recipes based on the spices we could detect. Here are a couple for you to try out. Remember, with most recipes you can adjust most anything you want to tailor it to your taste buds (except baking recipes, baking involves more science). We could detect some cardamom, so feel free to add that to the following recipe:

Egyptian Meat Spice:
1/2 tsp allspice
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp cloves, ground
1/2 tsp nutmeg, ground
1/2 tsp fenugreek
1/2 tsp ginger, powdered

Alternatively, because who doesn't like options:
Moroccan Spice:
1 tsp cumin, ground
1 tsp ginger, ground
1 tsp salt
3/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1/2 tsp cinnamon, ground
1/2 tsp coriander, ground
1/2 tsp cayenne
1/2 tsp allspice, ground
1/4 tsp cloves, ground

Hope you give this recipe a try!

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1 comment:

  1. I hope there's leftovers! I'll be over for dinner :)