Project Food Blog Entry #2: The Classics – How To Cook As If You Know What You’re Doing


Tagine Baby

As you may have guessed by the title of this post I made it through to round 2 of Project Food Blog 2010! A huge, massive, enormous thanks to everyone who voted for me – was thrilled to bits! For challenge 2 we were told to have a go at an “ethnic classic dish from another culture” and see how well we could pull it off. So what did I pick? A Moroccan tagine dish.

Two of my girl friends went to Morocco when they were about 16 and came back raving about everything. They even talked with great fondness about having to bring their own toilet paper up and down mountains. But I’ve never been. When trying to decide what I should cook I asked myself, what would I never think to make? And the answer was a tagine, something I’ve never attempted or eaten very much – Middle-Eastern doesn’t feature heavily on my radar. In fact, it’s so far removed from what I normally do it may as well not exist. But that’s why I loved the idea: why not really have a go at something different?


Ayoush, James Street


Ayoush, originally uploaded by jaxies.

I would like to preface this post by saying it’s a miracle that any of these photos are in focus because not only was it incredibly dark when I was taking them (and I have terrible eyesight, to boot), but I was drunk. There. I said it. Sorry. I know, I should be a beacon of moral fibre, I should get my business done and leave the drunkenness to afterwards, but I didn’t. I’m not. Oh well.

My girl friends and I decided to go for dinner together for a catch-up/bonding session. Two boyfriends were brought along as well, which is always dangerous (for them) as when we girls get together we pretty much regress back to the age of thirteen. It’s really rather wonderful.

For fear of being late I got there very early, was the first person in the entire downstairs of the restaurant (very embarrassing, they turned the music on just for me, but made the comment, “what, just for one lady?!” when the hostess told them to do so, and I then hid behind a newspaper in a very dark and very large booth/cave (seriously, I can’t quite describe just how huge these booths are), waiting for my friends), and then, as I felt so incredibly awkward, managed to down an entire large glass of pinot grigio in about ten minutes. Whoops.

Anyway, despite all that, Ayoush is actually a very decent restaurant, and plenty of fun. I was maybe a bit of a killjoy as I’d come straight from work and was pretty exhausted, but I still had a good time with my girls and the food was a surprising treat.