Tuesday, 14 April 2015

Chicken and Chickpea Tagine

This chicken tagine serves four and is essentially a pimped up chicken stew with an exotic North African makeover. The herbs and spices used make for a fragrant, almost aromatic dish and it tastes great served with rice, cous cous or fresh bread to soak up all of the juices. 

Here's how:

Handful of shallots
3 cloves garlic
1 tbsp grated fresh ginger
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp coriander seeds
8 Chicken thighs
Jar or tin of olives
Tin of chickpeas
2 lemons
Pinch of saffron threads
Handful of cherry tomatoes
1 pint Chicken stock
4 tbsp olive oil
1 cinnamon stick
1 bay leaf
2 tbsp honey
Bunch fresh parsley
Bunch fresh coriander
Coarse sea salt
Fresh ground black pepper 

Add 1 tablespoon of olive oil to the tagine and place on the hob on a low heat and turn the oven onto a moderate-hot heat (180-200⁰C).

Peel and crush the garlic and grate the ginger and add to the tagine with the cumin and coriander seeds and just soften then remove from the heat.

In a separate pan, add a smidge of olive oil and brown off the chicken thighs. Whilst chicken is browning add to the tagine the drained chickpeas, whole, peeled shallots, halved cherry tomatoes and whole olives.

Cut the lemons into quarters and add to the tagine.

Once chicken is browned, add to the tagine and pour over the stock, seasoning, bay leaf, cinnamon stick, honey and remaining olive oil.

Steep the saffron in a couple of tablespoons of hot water then also pour into the tagine.

Add some chopped parsley and coriander, but retain most for garnish and to stir through at the end. Give the tagine a good stir, add the lid and place into the oven for 45 minutes.

Check the tagine after about 30 minutes and stir through and add a little more stock if needed.

After 45 minutes, remove from the oven and check that the chicken is tender – it should be! If not, return to the oven for a further 15 minutes then check again and repeat as necessary – the chicken should easily fall off of the bone. 

Before dishing up stir through some chopped coriander and parsley and then garnish each plate with some whole leaves. 

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