How to season a Tagine:
Before using a new tagine for the first time, it is necessary to season it otherwise it could crack when first used. Seasoning also serves to remove any possible traces of an earthenware flavor, especially from the unglazed interior of the lid. While this is usually done on a charcoal brazier, an oven is the better option. Here is how to do it:
First wash the new tagine and lid with soapy water, rinse and wipe dry.
Check that the tagine will fit in the oven, removing the upper shelves to create space.
Preheat the oven to 150*C (Gas: Setting # 2).
To the tagine base, add one peeled and roughly chopped onion, 2 roughly chopped carrots, 2 whole garlic cloves, 1 bay leaf, and 2-3 tablespoons of olive oil.
Almost fill the base with water, cover with the lid and place in the pre-heated oven for 40 minutes.
Remove and leave at room temperature to cool slowly.
Once the Tagine has cooled down, discard the contents and wash the tagine in hot suds and dry thoroughly. The tagine is now ready for use.
When cooking in a tagine, it is beter to use it over a medium-heat charcoal fire; adding more charcoal coals when needed. When using a tagine on a gas fire or an electric plate, it should be heated slowly over low heat and the use of a good heat diffuser is recommended. However, tagines are excellent for oven cooking, again taking precautions against sudden heating and excessive heat.
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