Seafood and tomato tagine

  • medium
  • 6
  • 1 hour 25 minutes

This seafood tagine recipe is a wonderful one-pot dish that sees squid, mussels and prawns gently simmered in a richly spiced and fragrant tomato Moroccan tagine. A wonderful weeknight dinner that celebrates seafood in all its glory. This recipe is taken from Casablanca: My Moroccan Food by Nargisse Benkabbou (Mitchell Beazley, £20). Image by Matt Russell.

First published in 2019

This tagine is seafood paradise on a plate, or at least that’s how I like to think of it. I developed this recipe a few years ago when I was trying to come up with a seafood tagine to surpass all others – one that every single person would love. So this is supposedly the definitive seafood tagine recipe – charmingly fragrant, not too sweet, not too spicy and full of seafood goodness. So far it has succeeded in making everyone who has tried it happy.

I love this topped with a generous sprinkling of feta, which I realise isn’t a typical Moroccan ingredient, but it gives a nice salty, tangy kick to the whole dish.




To serve

  • 50g of feta, crumbled
  • bread, or couscous, to serve on the side


Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan over a medium-low heat. Add the onions, cover the pan and leave to cook for about 10 minutes or until they are soft and translucent, stirring occasionally. Add all the remaining ingredients, except the seafood and feta. Bring to the boil over a high heat, then re-cover the pan, reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer gently for 1 hour or until you have a fragrant sauce
Meanwhile, prepare your mussels. Sort through them and chuck out any with damaged shells or that don’t shut when lightly tapped on a surface. Pull away any beards and scrape off any barnacles attached to the shells with a knife, then rinse thoroughly under cold running water and drain
Taste the sauce and adjust the seasoning, adding more salt if necessary. Once the sauce is ready, it’s time to cook your seafood, but make sure that you are ready to serve before adding it because it will cook within minutes. Don’t forget that the sauce has to be warm in order to cook the seafood, so if you have prepared it in advance and it’s cold then reheat it before adding the seafood. Throw in the prepared mussels, squid and prawns, then give everything a good stir to ensure that the seafood is well coated with the sauce
Cover the pan and cook for 5–7 minutes or until the mussel shells have opened and the other seafood is just cooked – be careful not to overcook, otherwise it will become very chewy. Discard any mussels that have failed to open
Sprinkle over the feta and serve immediately with bread or couscous

Nargisse Benkabbou is a London-based chef and author. While growing up in Brussels, her parents filled their kitchen with the flavours of their native Morocco, instilling in Nargisse a passion for exploring her culture through food.

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