Any ideas on how much use I can put it to? metal or clay??
i wouldn't waste your money on a tagine. just use a good enamel coated cast iron pot like le cruset. if you do get one, get a safe (lead-free) clay one.
Thanks chefbaltz!..It was a toss up between Le Creuset & the tagine.. You just helped me make up my mind!
A large tagine is difficult to store. But if you do not have a enamel coated cast iron pot..(Le Cruset) by all means get that first---it's far more versatile.
When you do get into 'tangine" shopping again---Emile Henry makes the best ones. They're flame proof clay..meaning they can go directly on glasstop stoves or gas stoves. The high top makes them difficult to store, but the clay used is great for roasts, tagines, and breads.
They also make dutch ovens/pots like Le cruset. I really love the substance they use..very nice heating abilities, dishwasher safe. In fact I'd look over that company for the large pot purchase. It's a bit pricy tho...but I really, like them.
Disclaimer: I only have the Emile Henry Tagine. It's used for tagines and large roasts as the high top is great for a roast. For breads; especially 'no kneed' breads' it's also good with the high top. The high top allows the bread to steam naturally, giving it the crust. Don't add water to it tho...clay/water is bad. It steams just fine for 10 mins of initial cooking.
I found it a bit difficult to clean well after using for breads or roasts..and little oil spots formed on the surface.
A long soak and and paste of Barkeeper's Friend and a 'green 3M" scrubber took those out without damaging the finish. Did I say I really like that product? When/if I replace my La Cruset stock pot...that's what I want.
I have a YELLOW Le Cruset tagine and I LOVE it. The bottom is cast iron and the top it ceramic. It is different than a dutch oven - and though you can use a dutch oven for a lot of stuff, the tagine IS different in how it cooks. Plus, it's looks great and well, that's a big part of the fun, right????
I brought home a gorgeous tagine from Morocco this summer--and I love it and am so excited to own it and frankly still only reach for the LC Dutch (well French) oven.
I'd love a tagine too, and I'd probably get the Emile Henry flameware one, as I have two other pieces that I adore. But if you don't have a dutch oven of some sort, you really need that first . I'd still go with the flameware. The minute I got my Emile Henry dutch oven, it replaced the Le Creuset as the most-used pot in the house. Check it out at http://www.emilehenryusa.com/ceramic-cookware/Flame-Red-61.html
I'll adamently disagree with the answer that you don't need a tagine. It doesn't function like a dutch oven at all. It has a conical shape for a reason. I'll also endorse the Emile-Henry as well. A very well made product. But if you want to experiment you can buy very inexpensive ones at any number of kitchen stores.
I also own an All-Clad metal one (nickname "Big Zombie") because of its greater capacity.
I use the Emile Henry one - regularly. My advice is to get one but buy one size larger than you think. You will want to use it for entertaining. Since it was invented a few thousand years before the Dutch oven, something must be right!I use it exclusively for Moroccan/African recipes.Saying to use a utensil other than a tagine for a tagine dish is like saying a frying pan is as good as a wok for Asian cooking.