Your cart is empty
Shop products

Shared by Ori Menashe

Beef Cheek Tagine

Yield: 2-4 servings

Beef Cheek Tagine

Yield: 2-4 servings

Family Journey

Mogador (present-day Essaouira), MoroccoBeer Sheva, IsraelLos Angeles
Ramat Hasharon, IsraelLos Angeles

The cheeks can be prepared up to 1 day ahead and stored, covered, in the refrigerator overnight. To reheat, preheat the oven to 325°F. Remove the beef cheeks from the refrigerator and skim the fat off the top. Cook for about 30 minutes, until the dish reaches your desired temperature. 


  • 2 ¼ pounds beef cheek, cleaned and cubed into 1 ¼ inch pieces (may substitute beef short rib)
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 ¼ teaspoons granulated sugar 
  • 1 ½ cups apple cider vinegar
  • 2-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled 
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 quart Super Stock (see separate recipe below); may substitute high-quality store-bought vegetable stock
  • infused with the aromatics from the super stock recipe
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter 
  • 3 cups diced yellow onion (3 onions)
  • 1 fresh bay leaf or 1 dry bay leaf
  • 3 tablespoons Ras el Hanout
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 serrano chile, sliced 
  • 1 prune, quartered
  • 4 dried apricots, quartered
  • Cilantro leaves and stems for garnish 
  • Rice, couscous, or mashed potatoes for serving
Main CoursesMeat North AfricaMiddle East


  • Step 1

    Season the beef cheek with salt, black pepper, and granulated sugar. Let rest for 10 minutes. In a blender, puree the vinegar, ginger, and garlic.

  • Step 2

    Place the seasoned beef cheeks in a bowl, pour the liquid over the meat, and mix to coat. Cover with plastic wrap and let marinate in the refrigerator overnight or for up to 24 hours.

  • Step 3

    Remove the beef cheeks from the refrigerator. Drain, reserving the liquid, and bring to room temperature. Transfer the reserved marinade to a small saucepan and cook over low heat until reduced by half. Set aside.

  • Step 4

    In a separate small saucepan, bring the stock to a boil. Preheat the oven to 325°F. Add 1 tablespoon of the oil and ½ tablespoon of the butter to a sauté pan and place over high heat. Add one-quarter of the meat and sear on both sides until golden, about 4 minutes, then transfer to a plate with a slotted spoon and set aside. Repeat this process, adding another 1 tablespoon of the oil and ½ tablespoon of the butter to the pan before adding another one-quarter of the meat, until all the meat has been seared.

  • Step 5

    Wipe the pan clean, then return to the stove over high heat and add the remaining 3 tablespoons of oil. Add the onion and bay leaf and cook for 4 to 5 minutes, until the onion is translucent, stirring to avoid browning. Remove the pan from the heat and add the ras el hanout. Stir to coat the onions and bloom the spices for about 1 minute. Add the brown sugar and the reduced marinade liquid and stir to combine.

  • Step 6

    Transfer the onion mixture to a 6-quart baking dish and top with the seared beef cheeks. Pour the hot stock over the beef cheeks. Then cover the dish with aluminum foil. Bake for 2 ½ hours, until the meat is fork-tender and has fully broken down. Remove the cheeks from the oven and uncover. Add the sliced serrano chile and let rest, uncovered, for 1 hour. 

  • Step 7

    To serve, transfer the cheeks to a large serving bowl or tagine and top with the prune and apricots. Garnish with cilantro leaves. Serve with a side of rice, couscous, or mashed potatoes.