After reading the food article How to cook an authentic Moroccan tagine by Rebecca Davies in the "The Telegraph" I was so inspired to make something similar today. It was such a coincidence as I just saw a food program few days ago about Moroccan Food on the bbc channel. As chicken was bought yesterday, I had just about the right ingredients at home to make a chicken and chickpea tagine. This recipe is a mix of various recipes I found online, so this is by no means an authentic recipe, just my variation :)
The taste was absolutely amazing and I will definitely try more Moroccan food inspired recipes from now on. In the past I have been reluctant in cooking anything Morrocan, as I thought it look to complicated. But I have to say that after reading and watching the food network channel, especially watching Jenny Morris Cooks Marocco I have been greatly inspired to try more recipes with inspiration from this flavorful and colorful country. Jenny Morris is so warm, informative and engaging in her programs, I simple love watching her cook and share her recipes.
Now, back to my Chicken & Chickpea Tagine recipe!
A mix of chicken pieces (two drums, 5 wings, 1 breast)
1 cup butternut squash, diced
1/5 leek, chopped,
1 onion, chopped
2 carrots, sliced
1.2 yellow bell pepper
1 can of chickpeas, rinsed
1 can of chopped tomatoes
2-3 cups of chicken stock
2 tbsp of honey
1/5 cup of dried sultanas
3 tbsp olive oil
1 1/5 cup of couscous
2tbsp oliv oil
Spice mix: 1/5 tsp of turmeric, ground ginger, ground garlic, all season salt, pepper mix, paprika, cumin and coriander. 1/4 tsp cinnamon 1 tbsp of parsley. 4-5 slices of preserved lemon. (Feel free to add more/less of these above mentioned spices, to taste).
1- Dice and slice up all the vegetables and the chicken breast for even cooking.
2- Put the chicken in a pot and put enough water to cover it and bring to a boil. Remove the water once the chicken is cooked through, usually after few minutes. Add all the spices except lemon and 3 table spoons of olive oil and mix well so that the chicken pieces are well marinated. At this point it should smell heavenly from the pot :)
3- Add all the vegetables and the cans of chickpeas and chopped tomatoes. Add 2-3 cups of chicken stock and bring it to a boil on high heat.
4- Add the sultanas and bring down to a low-medium heat and let it simmer for 30-45 minutes until the water has gone down to half of the size and everything is well cooked and the flavors well infused.
5- Before I let the tagine simmer away I took a half cup of the soup from it. I added the soup to 500 ml of boiled water to add flavor to the couscous once it was time to make it. I added the water over the couscous, as you only need to add hot water and olive oil to it and let it become fluffy for about 10-15 minutes. Then the dish is ready to be served!