Chicken Tagine with Apricots and Almonds

by CSWSmovie

New year, new way of doing things. In an effort to share more recipes my family with the time and schedule that I have, this blog is going to be a lot less wordy. You’ll find here instead just  a photo + recipe with a few notes when necessary, with the idea that the only recipes I post are ones that I found to be tremendously good. I hope you find some useful ideas and inspiration on here!

First up, my recent go-to dish for company. I amped up this already excellent recipe with a few more spices in the mix. You can serve this with any grain; here it’s pictured (in the front left) with basmati rice (I flavored the rice with some butter and lemon zest), a simple salad and some roasted potatoes.

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Chicken Tagine with Apricots and Almonds

adapted from Gourmet

  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons salt
  • 3 tablespoons plus 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1.5 to 2 pounds chicken boneless chicken thighs
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1 medium red onion, halved, then sliced 1/4 inch thick
  • 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • about 1-2 inches of fresh ginger root, peeled and diced
  • 5 fresh cilantro sprigs
  • 5 sprigs fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 2 tablespoons mild honey
  • 1 (3-inch) cinnamon stick
  • 1/2 cup dried Turkish apricots, separated into halves
  • handful of slivered almonds to garnish

Stir together ground cinnamon, paprika, turmeric, pepper, red pepper flakes and 1 teaspoon salt, and 2 tablespoons oil in a large bowl. Add chicken pieces in batches and turn to coat well with the spices.

Heat butter and 1 tablespoon oil in base of tagine (or in skillet), uncovered, over moderate heat until hot but not smoking, then brown half of chicken, skin sides down, turning over once, 8 to 12 minutes. Transfer to a plate. Brown remaining chicken in same manner, adding any spice mixture left in bowl.

Add onion, ginger and remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt to tagine and cook, uncovered, stirring frequently, until soft, about 8 minutes. Add garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, 3 minutes. Tie cilantro and parsley into a bundle with kitchen string and add to tagine along with 1/2 cup water, chicken, and any juices accumulated on plate. Reduce heat and simmer, covered, 30 minutes. (Note: you can add cilantro/parsley at the end if you don’t have twine). Near the end of this cooking period, add in dried apricots – you want them to plump up a bit in the liquid. Also add at this time the cinammon stick and a tablespoon of honey. Discard herbs and cinammon stick, and sprinkle with slivered almonds (and fresh parsley and cilantro if you didn’t add it before.) Serves four with no leftovers.

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