Recipes from My Kitchen

The power of cinnamon.

I have made quite a few good meals recently, but I cook so fast some evenings that I forgot to document what I’m doing until I’m halfway through dinner!  So I apologize that you’ve missed out on all my foodie-goodness :-p!!

Tonight, I forgot to take during-photos, but since the whole meal was made in one pot I took one when it was all finished.  This is a Martha Stewart recipe, and even though some of hers are rather exotic this one only *sounds* exotic, but the taste is incredible.  Cinnamon.  It’s truly underrated in cooking.  Generally you think of it as something sweet – coffee cake, french toast, cookies.  But it’s a main ingredient in a lot of lamb and beef dishes – and it’s such a unique flavor.  I browned the beef in the skillet, then cooked the veggies, and finally added the beef back in.  Making it all in one dish makes dinner so much easier.  I also did what the recipe suggested and made a side of couscous – I’m sure you could also make white or brown rice, or nothing at all (if preferred).  I served this with some roasted cauliflower, just because it’s also delicious 🙂

North African Beef-and-Carrot Stew with Mint


1 1/4 lb boneless sirloin steak, cut into chunks
salt and pepper
2 Tbsp olive oil
1 med onion, coarsely chopped
5 med carrots, cut on a bias (I used baby carrots, and cut them in half, long-ways)
1/4 C tomato paste (I used one whole small can)
3/4 tsp Cinnamon (yum!!!)
1/4 tsp Cayenne (gives great heat!!)
2 C chicken broth
1/4 C fresh mint leaves

Couscous for serving


  1. Season sirloin with salt and pepper. Heat a large, wide shallow pan over medium-high heat. Swirl in 1 tablespoon oil, add steak in a single layer, and cook, turning a few times, until browned and medium-rare, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a plate.
  2. Add remaining 1 tablespoon oil to pan and cook vegetables, stirring occasionally, until onion is golden in places, about 5 minutes. Stir in tomato paste and cook 1 minute. Add spices and cook until fragrant, 15 seconds. Add broth; bring to a simmer. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer until carrots are crisp-tender, about 10 minutes. Return sirloin and any accumulated juices to pan; cook until warmed through, about 1 minute. Remove from heat. Season with salt and pepper; sprinkle with mint. Serve over couscous.
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