Moroccan Chicken Tajine2019-10-23
- Yield: 1
- Servings: 4
- Prep Time: 15m
- Cook Time: 1:20 h
- Ready In: 1:30 h
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This information is per serving.
Total Fat16.0 g
Total Carbohydrate33.2 g
Vitamin A20.8 %
Vitamin B-124.3 %
Vitamin B-623.3 %
Vitamin C16.9 %
Vitamin E10.8 %
Moroccan Chicken Tajine is slow-cooked stews cooked at low temperatures, leading to tender meat with aromatic vegetables and sauce. They’re historically cooked within the tajine pot, whose lid has a knob-like formation at its top to facilitate removal. Whereas stewing, the lid can be raised off without the help of a glove, enabling the cook to examine the main ingredients, add vegetables, move things around, or add extra cookery liquid.
Tajine or tagine is a type of dish found in the North African cuisines of Morocco, which is named after the unique pot in which it is cooked. The traditional tajine pot is formed entirely of heavy clay, which is sometimes painted or glazed. It consists of two parts; a base unit that is flat and circular with low sides and a large cone or dome-shaped cover that rests inside the base during cooking. The cover is designed to promote the return of all condensation to the bottom. With the cover removed, the base can be taken to the table for serving.
Most tagines involve slow simmering of less-expensive meats. For example, the ideal cuts of lamb are the neck, shoulder, or shank cooked until it is falling off the bone. Very few Moroccan tajines require initial browning; if there is to be browning, it is invariably done after the lamb has been simmered, and the flesh has become butter-tender and very moist. To accomplish this, the cooking liquid must contain some fat, which may be skimmed off later.
Moroccan tajines often combine lamb or chicken with a medley of ingredients or seasonings: olives, quinces, apples, pears, apricots, raisins, prunes, dates, nuts, with fresh or preserved lemons, with or without honey, with or without a complexity of spices. Traditional spices that are used to flavor tajines include ground cinnamon, saffron, ginger, turmeric, cumin, paprika, pepper, as well as the famous spice blend Ras el hanout. Some famous tajine dishes are mqualli or emshmel (both are pairings of chicken, olives, and citrus fruits, though preparation methods differ), kofta (meatballs in an egg and tomato sauce), and mrouzia (lamb, raisins and almonds).
Other ingredients for a tajine include any product that braises well: fish, quail, pigeon, beef, root vegetables, legumes, even amber, and aga wood. Modern recipes in the West include pot roasts, ossobuco, lamb shanks, and turkey legs. Seasonings can be traditional Moroccan spices, French, Italian, or suited to the dish.
Morocco, perhaps feeling pressure to catch up with Europe, is beginning to use the efficient pressure cooker to make tajines. Recently, European manufacturers have created tajines with heavy cast-iron bottoms that can be fired on a stovetop at high heat. This permits browning meat and vegetables before cooking. While the similar Dutch oven and Sac spell (sach) (a cast iron pot with a tight cover) braise most efficiently in the oven, the tajine braises best on the stovetop.
Tajine makers, who want to remain loyal to the original cooking methods but save time, can still cook with saucepans and casseroles, but place them over gas versus a slow fire. Regardless of how you make tajine, you should make it with love and care, as this will assure a delicious result. Also, keep in mind that it is challenging to make tajines for large groups because they don’t contain much more than sauce. As a result, a tajine is better prepared for your family or an intimate gathering of friends.
Tajines are a delicious meal if you enjoy exotic ingredients like lamb or chicken marinated in olive oil and garlic. (If you are vegetarian, you can request your tajine to be made without meat during your Moroccan travels). Meats are always first sautéed and then embellished with combinations of marinades, including saffron, cumin, crushed red pepper, fresh coriander, parsley, chickpeas, and almonds. To be playful with the dishes, Moroccans sometimes add prunes, ginger, or hard-boiled eggs. The standard meal will always include chicken, olives, and salted lemons.
Some tricks to get your tajine like those of Moroccan mothers include using cooking butter (you can substitute for olive oil) and large quantities of chopped onions. Warm the onions until they reach their softest state; this will help the tajine sauce taste creamier. Adding a touch of honey is another secret.
- 500g cubed chicken meat
- 4 medium (Carrots or/and potatoes…etc) peeled and cubed
- 1 medium onion, finely chopped
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 cloves garlic, crushed
- 1 teaspoon of cumin
- ½ teaspoon of pepper
- ½ teaspoon of salt
- ½ teaspoon of ginger
- 1 bunch of parsley
- 3 cups of water
Heat the oil, saute garlic and chopped onions in a large saucepan until they become soft.
Add the chicken cubes and saute for 10 minutes.
Add the water, season with spices bring to a boil and simmer for 35 minutes.
Add the vegetables, simmer for 30 minutes.
Sprinkle with finely chopped parsley over the tajine.
A drizzle of olive oil.