I don’t quite know what’s gotten into me, but I seem to be on a rather exotic food kick lately. I blame the never-ending winter. I live in Pennsylvania, and it’s been one storm after another, and it’s February, and there are fifteen inches of snow in my back yard that my kids can actually walk on. (My daughter is now almost as tall as the clothesline).
See? Yeah, at first that’s all exciting to have that much snow, but by now I’m all, “Meh. Where’s spring?”
So, maybe I’m suffering from some sort of cabin fever that manifests itself in culinary adventursomeness (yes, that’s totally a word. Because I say so). Maybe my taste buds are just bored. I don’t know, but I’ve been all in my spice cabinet lately, using things that have been hanging around for years unused. I’ve already made that Chicken Tikka Masala three times (THREE TIMES!). And now I moved on to this Moroccan Chicken. Who knows what it’s going to be next?
The really great thing about this new spice kick I’m on though is that I’m using all those spices that you always hear about being so good for you. There’s so many great health benefits to these Eastern spices, and they’re anti-inflammatory to boot. (Knowing that helps me feel all virtuous about cooking lately, too.)
So, this chicken. It reminds me a lot of the Braised Lamb Shanks that I posted before – just without all the fuss of having to get rid of the icky sheep fat. And with slightly different spices. But the process is the same.
Heat some oil (coconut or olive) in a large pot and brown some boneless, skinless chicken thighs. You could use bone-in thighs if you wanted, of course – I just like not having to mess with the bone!
Brown on both sides, and then remove from the pan. There should be some caramelized bits left stuck to the bottom of the pan.
Dump in some chopped onion, garlic, and ginger.
Stir them around for a few minutes until the onions start to grow transparent, and then stir in the cumin, coriander, and red pepper.
Pour in some white wine, which will release all those yummy bits from the bottom of the pan. Use a wooden spoon or spatula of some sort to scrape everything up, and then pour in some chicken broth.
Let it simmer for half an hour. If you’re starting this early, you can let it go on low heat for hours, though. You could also transfer everything to a crock pot at this point and just let it go all day.
Half an hour before you want to eat, add in the carrots. When they’re soft, it’s done!
That’s it. This is really great served with the Cilantro Chutney from my last post. Really good! If you don’t want to make the chutney but still want some cilantro kick (which is really good) then you can always just add some dried cilantro to the dish.
Also, to make this really Moroccan, you’d add in some dried dates or raisins or something like that, but I knew my family would totally rebel against me if I put anything like that in here, so I didn’t. If your family wouldn’t execute a coup d’etat if you added such things, though, and you like the idea, then add them in at the same time as you add the carrots!
Serve it up on top of some turmeric rice. Just make rice like normal but sprinkle in a teaspoon or so of turmeric into the water. (When my son saw this rice tonight he said, “Yay! More yellow rice!”)
Really yummy. And full of really good spices for you too! So eat up.
- Olive oil or coconut oil
- 6-10 skinless chicken thighs
- 1 large onion, chopped or sliced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 inch piece of ginger, peeled and finely minced
- 1 tsp cumin
- ½ tsp coriander
- ⅛ tsp ground cayenne pepper
- ½ tsp dried cilantro (if not serving with the Cilantro Chutney)
- ½ tsp salt
- ¼ tsp ground pepper
- 1 cup white wine
- 2 cups chicken broth
- 4 large carrots, sliced into 1 inch pieces
- ¼ cup golden raisins or dried dates (optional)
- Heat enough oil to cover the bottom of your pan, and sprinkle your chicken thighs with salt and pepper, and brown the chicken on both sides until golden.
- Remove the chicken from the pan, and add in the onions, garlic, and ginger. Stir and cook for a few minutes until the onions start to turn translucent.
- Stir in the spices.
- Pour in the wine and use a wooden spoon to scrape up all the caramelized bits of chicken from the bottom of the pan.
- Pour in the chicken broth. Cover the pan with a lid and let simmer for half an hour.
- (You can let this simmer on low or cook in a crock pot at this point for as long as you want.)
- Half an hour before eating add in the sliced carrots. If using dates or raisins, add them at this time. Cook until the carrots are soft.
- Serve over turmeric rice. (Just sprinkle in about a teaspoon of turmeric in the water when you cook the rice.)