One birthday my husband got a wonderful spice test tube collection for when he BBQ's. We love to BBQ and many of the tubes of spices have been refilled time after time - BUT there is always a tube, tub or a little box in everyone's spice rack or drawer that you just never touch. Well ours is Ras-el-hanout - quite honestly I didn't know what it was, let alone what to do with it.
A little bit of research later and I can tell you that Ras-el-hanout is an intriguing collection of fragrant spices from North Africa. It's name in Arabic means 'head of the shop' which in reality translates to each spice vendor using the best of their spices to magic up a unique recipe.
A combination of cinnamon, cumin, coriander, allspice, black pepper, turmeric, cardamom and ginger are most commonly used along with salt.
This Ras-el-hanout Roasted Vegetable Traybake is a wonderful way to use this spice, bringing a lovely fragrance and warmth to some delicious and nutritious veggies. Sprinkle with feta or top with grilled halloumi for a tasty lunch or dinner. It's also a perfect side dish to serve with Lemon, Oregano and Ras-el-hanout Chicken. Find it here - Lemon oregano and ras-el-hanout chicken
No Ras-el-hanout?? No problem - keep scrolling to find my version of this fragrant spicy blend to make at home.
A recipes with benefits
Not only is this recipe full of nutritional veggies but we also leave the skins on both the sweet potato and carrots giving you and your loved ones even more goodness. Sweet potatoes, carrots, red pepper and red onion - between them they are bursting with Vitamin A, Vitamin C, antioxidants and potassium.
- 2 sweet potatoes
- 1 red pepper
- 2 large carrots
- 1 red onion
- 2 large or 3 small cloves of garlic
- Small handful of fresh coriander.
Ingredients for the vegetable marinade
- 2 large or 3 small cloves of garlic
- 1 and ½ tablespoons of olive oil
- ¼ teaspoon of salt flakes
- ¼ teaspoon of ground black pepper
- 1 and ½ teaspoons of Ras-el-hanout spice mix
Preheat the oven to 200°C / 400°F
Scrub the sweet potatoes and carrots, Remove any straggling hairs or very gnarly bits from the sweet potato and wash the red pepper.
Cut the sweet potato and carrots into cubes.
Peel, and cut the onion into small chunks
Deseed the red pepper and cut into large chunks. Find out an easy way to deseed a pepper here - how to deseed a pepper
Add all the vegetables to a baking tray or dish
Prepare the Ras-el-hanout Roasted Vegetable Traybake Marinade
Crush the garlic cloves and add to the olive oil, salt, ground black pepper and ras-el-hanout spice. Mix well to combine.
Pour the spicy oil mix all over the vegetables and mix very well.
Bake in the oven for approximately 40 minutes - or until the vegetables are soft and look nicely golden.
Chop the coriander and sprinkle over the vegetable mix. Serve up!
Make your own Ras-el-hanout Spice Mix
It's a wonderful thing to make your own spice mix! Homemade is often cheaper than buying pre-made versions and of course you can personalize your blend increasing the quantity of spices you love and omitting the ones you don't care for.
This is the Ras-el-hanout Spice Mix blend that I like to make most of all:
- 2 Tablespoons cumin seeds
- 1 Teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 2 Tablespoons coriander seed
- 2 Teaspoons ground black pepper
- 1 Teaspoon ground turmeric
- ½ Teaspoon cardamom powder
- 1 Teaspoon ground ginger
- 1 Teaspoon salt
Mix together and store in a glass spice jar.
This dish would be perfect as a vegetarian meal sprinkled with feta or topped with grilled halloumi. If you prefer fish, then a salmon or tuna steak as a topping would be delicious. It's also a perfect side dish to serve with Lemon, Oregano and Ras-el-hanout Chicken. Find the link here Lemon oregano and ras-el-hanout chicken