Tagine de Poulet aux Fruits Secs
(Moroccan braised chicken with dried fruit and almonds)
This is a wonderful Moroccan tagine, succulent chicken redolent with the sweet flavors of dried fruit and the pleasant crunch of almonds.
Serve tagine de poulet aux fruits secs with couscous. Place a heap of couscous on a plate with steep sides, ladle the tagine over the top and spoon extra sauce around the edge.
4 to 6 servings
- Butter or olive oil -- 1/4 cup
- Slivered almonds -- 1/2 cup
- Chicken, cut into serving pieces -- 2 1/2 to 3 pounds
- Ground coriander -- 1 tablespoon
- Ground cinnamon -- 2 teaspoons
- Ground ginger -- 1 teaspoon
- Turmeric -- 1/2 teaspoon
- Onion, minced -- 1
- Stock or water -- 2 cups
- Saffron (optional) -- pinch
- Salt and pepper -- to taste
- Dried fruit (prunes, raisins, dates, apricots, or a combination) -- 1 cup
- Honey -- 2 to 3 tablespoons
- Heat butter or oil in a large pot over medium flame. Add almonds and saute until lightly browned. Remove to a bowl and set aside.
- Brown the chicken pieces in the oil, then set aside.
- Remove all but 2 or 3 tablespoons of fat from the pot and return the pot to medium-high heat. Stir in the coriander, cinnamon, ginger and turmeric and cook for about 30 seconds. Add the onions and saute until they are translucent, 3 to 4 minutes.
- Lay the chicken pieces on top of onions and add the stock or water, saffron, salt and pepper. Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer for 35 to 45 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked through and tender. Add water if necessary to keep the tagine from drying out.
- Remove the chicken pieces to a plate and stir the dried fruit and honey into the simmering broth. Simmer, uncovered, for about 10 minutes. Return the chicken to pot and simmer to heat through.
- Adjust seasoning and remove the tagine to a serving dish. Sprinkle with the sauteed almonds and serve.
Tajine de Poulet aux Fruits Secs Variations
- For a thicker sauce, add 3 or 4 fresh apricots, halved, along with the water or stock. They will cook down and make a thicker sauce that coats the chicken.