This Ras El Hanout spice blend will make cooking Moroccan food at home a breeze! It's a blend of fresh spices that can vary from household to household, similar to curry powder.
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Ras el Hanout is a popular Moroccan spice blend used accross the country to add flavor to a variety of different dishes.
It's a great blend to have on hand to use in tajines, on steak, chicken or even on a pan of roasted vegetables. It makes a wonderful addition to your spice cabinet and will make cooking with Moroccan inspiration a breeze.
Many of the spices I use for my Ras el Hanout recipe were already in my spice cabinet, making this a super easy recipe to make in a matter of minutes.
Here's what you'll need:
- black pepper
See recipe card for exact quantities.
Like making any other spice blend, making Ras el Hanout is pretty simple.
First you'll want to start by collecting your spices. In general, using whole spices will result in a fresher, more flavorful end result. Because of this I encourage you to use as many whole spices as you can/have on hand.
To grind up spices I like using a mortar and pestle or coffee grinder.
Once your spices are all ground, it's as easy as mixing them together until a consistent blend is formed.
From there you can store your blend in an airtight jar in your spice cabinet for up to 6 months (depending on how fresh your spices are).
Where to Use Ras el Hanout
As mentioned above, there are a variety of different uses for this Moroccan spice blend. Here are a few of my favorites:
- Tajines - most Moroccan tajines will have their own specific spice blend depending on who you ask, but in general Ras el Hanout is the perfect catch all blend for tajines.
- Meat - this blend is to die for on red meat (especially lamb), chicken and even goes well with fish
- Veggies - this stuff has a way of bringing new depth to veggies and is really fun to sprinkle over some peppers, onions, and potatoes with olive oil before roasting
I can't stress enough the fact that the spices in Ras el Hanout will vary depending on who you ask. Because of the fluidity in this spice blend, there are surely hundreds of different variations of the recipe.
Here are some ways you might see them vary:
- Cardamom - some Moroccans will swear it's not Ras el Hanout if you didn't use cardamom... my family disagrees. If you love cardamom, feel free to add it in!
- Play around with quantities - if you want one specific spice to reign supreme over the others, you can always increase the quantity. The same goes for any spices you want to tone down! Just add less quantity.
- Spicy vs. mild - if you're into the spice (like my family), feel free to amp up the cayenne or leave it out entirely if you prefer a milder blend.
As mentioned above, my favorite way to grind whole spices is using a mortar and pestle. Not only is it super fun to feel the spices breaking down and smell that fresh spice smell, the texture is pretty tough to beat.
That said, a coffee grinder or whatever grinder you have on hand at home will work great too! Just make sure you clean it out before and after using so your steak doesn't taste like coffee (and your coffee doesn't end up tasting spicy!)
Store your Ras el Hanout in an air tight jar in your spice cabinet. Keeps up to 6 months if your spices are fresh.