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February 2011, Volume 7, Issue 2

From the Kitchen to the Table, The Kitchen Store in Orangeville

sophie conran tagineBringing the tastes of Morocco
into your kitchen!

If you don’t have plans to head anywhere exotic or warm this winter, perhaps cooking up a little international cuisine in your own kitchen will warm you up.

Tagines are one of the hottest trends in the kitchen this season, though they’ve been with us for centuries. Moroccan cuisine, a mix of Arab, Berber, Moorish, Middle Eastern, Mediterranean, African and Jewish influences, utilizes the tagine for many of its most popular dishes.

In keeping with our Moroccan cooking theme, we’re pleased to provide you with some great recipes to bring the flavours of Morocco into your own kitchen, and be sure to check out our Kitchen Toys section for some great gadgets, including a few sweet ideas just in time for Valentine’s day with your sweetheart (wine & chocolate, mmm!)

Be sure to drop by the store and see all the new items we have in stock, and let us know if there’s anything we can do to enhance your cooking experience!

With warm wishes,
Sigrid Wolm


In this Issue


Culinary Events and News

Sandra S, the January winner of a Le Creuset Mini Cocotte.

February Subscriber Draw
All subscribers to our electronic newsletter during the month of February will be entered to win a Sophie Conran Tagine (value $49.99).WinterFeast

Subscribe to Secrets from our Kitchen

WinterFeast 2011
February 15th to March 6, 2011


Moroccan Cuisine

Did you know?

  • Moroccan cuisine is greatly influenced by the country’s long history of colonizers and immigrants.
  • The Berbers, the first inhabitants of Morocco, introduced the traditional Moroccan dishes of tagine and couscous, which are still staple dishes today.
  • It is common for Moroccans to eat using their fingers, utilizing bread as a utensil.
  • The word tagine (or tajine) is derived from the Greek word “teganon” which means frying pan. It is believed to date back to the time of Greek rule in North Africa.
  • Harira, a Moroccan soup, is served to break the fast during the month of Ramadan.
  • Morocco is often referred to as the land of spices.
  • Ras al-hanut (meaning “best of the shop”) is a common spice blend used in many Moroccan dishes. The blend varies but usually includes cardamom, nutmeg, anise, mace, cinnamon, ginger, peppers and turmeric.
  • Moroccan cooking is based on the use of locally produced ingredients including fruits and vegetables, as well as lamb, beef, chicken and seafood.
  • The most common drink in Morocco is green tea with mint.

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Sophie Conran Tagine and Tableware

From Portmeirion’s Sophie Conran Collectionsophie conran tagine


We are delighted to introduce a beautiful tagine from Portmeirion’s Sophie Conran Collection. Perfect for slow cooking, it can be used on the stovetop or in the oven. The base also doubles up as a superb serving dish, allowing you to go straight from oven to table.

The Sophie Conran tagine is the newest item in her award winning collection from Portmeirion, and was recently short-listed by the Giftware Association as the 2011 Gift of the Year in the kitchen & dining category.

Try Sophie Conran’s delicious recipe for Chicken, Olive & Preserved Lemon Tagine.

$49.99 each

Sophie Conran Tableware

The perfect collection for contemporary living: make everyday a beautiful day with Sophie Conran from Portmeirion tableware. Developed by Sophie Conran, the collection is delicate and practical, and each piece is able to withstand the rigors of modern life, moving with ease from the table to the dishwasher, the freezer to the oven. Multi-functionality is central to the oven-to tableware collection with each and every piece being as beautiful on the table as it is practical in the kitchen.

Sofie Conran Portmeirion Group

Perfect for entertaining or for everyday use, as mixing bowls become salad bowls, measuring jugs morph into serving pieces and the roasting dishes can take centre stage on the table. From sumptuous soups to a quick bowl of cereal, the Sophie Conran collection has been designed to work in any setting. The main tableware collection comes in white with accessorizing pieces available in four contemporary colours: biscuit, sage, celadon and forget-me-not.

From the Kitchen to the Table stocks a broad selection of items from the Sophie Conran collection.

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Olivewood CollectionFun Kitchen Toys

Storing up some Moroccan flavour!

This charming olive wood bowl from Wildly Delicious is a versatile container for serving mustards, olives, salts and condiments.

Beautifully handcrafted in Tunisia, these bowls and lids are sanded to a silken finish then oiled to preserve the wood’s beauty. Completely food safe.

$19.95 each

Wine & chocolate - the perfect Valentine combo!

Treat your sweetheart to the perfect pairing this Valentine’s Day. Govino, the shatterproof, stemless wine glasses that reflect a wine’s colour and aromatics, now come paired with Brix Bites, the first chocolate specifically designed to compliment wine, a delectable treat featured in Oprah’s O Magazine and named one of the Ten Best at the 2010 Fancy Food Show.

$9.99 each glass and 6 bites

Govino and Brix bites for chocolate

Soup Socks for Stock


Don’t cry over spilled spices!

The RSVP Endurance Spice Funnel is the perfect tool for transferring spices and liquids to narrow jars and bottles.

Available in two sizes, the larger funnel has a removable straining filter that is ideal when preparing herb infused oil or vinegar.

Small size $4.50 each
Large size (with strainer) $10.99 each

Cuisipro Heart Shaped Cookie CuttersCookies with heart!

Create your own heart-shaped messages with this heartshaped cookie cutter set from Cuisipro. Set includes five different sizes of heart shaped cutters that snap together for neat storage.

Non-stick for easy release of dough, and dishwasher safe.

$11.99 per set

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Discover the flavours of Morocco!

Moroccan SpicesMoroccan cuisine is considered to be one of the most diverse cuisines in the world, owing to the mix of its Berber, Spanish, Corsican, Portuguese, Moorish, Middle Eastern, Mediterranean, African and Jewish cultural influences.

Tagines are used in Moroccan cuisine as a way to slow-cook foods at low temperatures, and to infuse meals with strong aromatic flavours.

Every city in Morocco has its own version of tagine, featuring some of their favourite ingredients, including fish, chicken, lamb, as well as a wide variety of locally produced vegetables, fruits, olives, lemons, herbs and spices.

It is said that food cooked in a tagine can result in the epitome of flavour, with mouth-watering juices keeping the meal moist and flavourful, as a result of the slow-cooking process. While tagines can be prepared ahead of time and quickly reheated, the best results are achieved when prepared and served immediately.

Spices are also used extensively in Moroccan food. And while there are many traditional foods in Morocco (including couscous, harira soup and tagines), Moroccan cooking leaves a lot up to the cook’s instinct, especially in regards to spicing and flavouring, so let imagination be your guide as you create your own tagine recipes.

Try making your own Moroccan Spice Mix (Ras Al-Hanut)

  • 2 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp. freshly ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp. freshly ground cardamom seed
  • 1/4 tsp. freshly ground cloves

Preserved Lemons:

Lemons preserved in salt are a vital part of Moroccan cooking. They are simple to prepare and can be kept for several months.
Take 1 kg / 2 lb washed lemons. Rub them with salt and cover them with 1 kg / 2 lb salt for 12 hours. Put them in a container with salt, cover them with water, add 15 cl / 10 tablespoons vinegar to stop them from turning black, and some bay leaves. Add 10 tablespoons groundnut peanut oil, and leave at room temperature for one week.


Some of our favourite Moroccan recipes:

Sophie Conran’s delicious recipe for Chicken, Olive & Preserved Lemon Tagine

Veal & Curry Tagine

Moroccan Harira Soup

Chef Michael Smith's Couscous-Stuffed Tomatoes
(may as well stuff tomatoes at this time of year! From the Food Network Web Site)