Simply Healthy Family: Chicken Tagine with a Twist!

29.12.10

Chicken Tagine with a Twist!


Some days I have to work a very long 12 hours. A 12 hours in a busy O.R. that wipes me out. A 12 hours that isn't as easy to recover from as it used to be. These are the days that cooking is the very last thing I want to do at the end of the day. Eating a hot, home-made dinner however, is just what I do need. Dilemma.

Crock Pot to the rescue! I keep most of these ingredients stocked in my pantry and only had to pick up some chicken thighs as we have been really limiting chicken lately for various reasons (read more about this life changing decision in my post/rant here). Also, I have been trying to not eat meat for dinner since IMO it isn't good for your body to be digesting meat while you sleep. Meat takes several hours of hard work for your GI system to digest and disrupts sleep.

Chicken Tagine is a classic Moroccan dish made several in several yummy variations but usually with the spices ginger, cumin, coriander, cinnamon, paprika and turmeric.  Tajines are slow-cooked stews braised at low temperatures, resulting in tender meat with aromatic vegetables and sauce. The best thing about Chicken Tagine is that you can throw in any combination of your favorite ingredients such as dried fruits, nuts, olives, veggies, preserved lemon, honey ect. and as long as you use the classic base of spices and tomatoes you've got yourself a Moroccan Delight!

I love my veggies and so I threw in some diced eggplant along with my olives, dried apricots and fresh cranberries. *On a side note, I don't think I will use fresh cranberries next time as they were pretty tart, or maybe I'll just use less to compliment the other flavors without over powering them.


A pretty Tagine pot is on the top of my wish list. I use a 'crock pot' for now ;)




The traditional tajine pot is formed entirely of a 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 so 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

Recently, European manufacturers have created tajines with heavy cast-iron bottoms that can be heated on a cooking stove to a high temperature. This permits the browning of meat and vegetables before cooking.



PRINT THIS RECIPE
Ingredients


2 tablespoons olive oil

8 skinless, boneless chicken thighs, cut into 1-inch pieces

1 eggplant, cut into 1 inch cubes

2 large onions, thinly sliced

4 large carrots, thinly sliced

1/2 cup dried cranberries

3/4 cup chopped dried apricots

1/2 cup green olives, sliced

2 cups chicken broth

2 tablespoons tomato paste

2 tablespoons lemon juice

2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

2 teaspoons garlic salt

1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin

1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger

1 teaspoon cinnamon

3/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

1 cup water

1 cup couscous



Directions:
* Searing the chicken before adding it to the crock pot is important to lock in flavour.

Heat olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Place the chicken pieces and eggplant in the heated oil; stir and cook until the chicken is browned on all sides but not cooked through. Remove the skillet from the heat.

Place the browned chicken and eggplant on the bottom of a slow cooker. Layer the onion, carrots, cranberries, and apricots over the chicken.

Whisk together the chicken broth, tomato paste, lemon juice, flour, garlic salt, cumin, ginger, cinnamon, and ground black pepper in a bowl. Pour the broth mixture into the slow cooker with the chicken and vegetables.

Cook on Low setting for 8 hours.

Bring water to boil in a saucepan. Stir in couscous, and remove from heat. Cover, and let stand about 5 minutes, until liquid has been absorbed. Fluff with a fork.

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  I'm sending this over to Potluck Fridays at eKats Kitchen!
 
'>'

7 comments:

  1. Crock pot meals are a must during busy weeks. What a fantastic looking meal!

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  2. The dried fruit in this dish must be fabulous. What a great crock pot meal. Bless your heart with those long shifts...I know that this must be wonderful to come home to. Thank you for sharing this recipe with me. I wish you and yours a blessed weekend and new year!

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  3. Hi Gwen! My little Ella just spent the day with Rachel and the girls yesterday....I heard your Dad et all is going to brave NYC today of all DAYS!!
    Q's.....any pizza recipes that you like? I make the dough in bread machine...we do Friday pizza night....need some new inspiration....also, I have some questions about your blog....would you share your email address?

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  4. I don't use my crock pot anywhere near as much as I should... I'm so glad you posted this.
    My husband is an airline pilot and frequently flies all night. He was just commenting the other day how he would look at the Captains after a long night and not understand why they were so tired. Just last week a young co-pilot was wanting to go to breakfast after a long night and my husband said he planned on spending the day in the hotel room, not even venturing out to see Waikiki beach! The co-pilot laughed. My husband said he for the first time felt his age!

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  5. Jess, we like mini/personal pizzas (type pizza in my search bar at top of my blog for tutorial)
    also, try new toppings such as sun dried tomatoes, goat cheese, artichoke hearts etc. Try a medditeranean pizza w Kalmata olives, feta and roma tomatoes. I like to infuse my pizza dough with fresh herbs like rosemary and thyme. I use a pizza stone, it really helps keep the crust crispy.
    my email is simplyhealthyfam@gmail.com
    Nice To Meet You!

    ReplyDelete
  6. Oh my goodness, this meal if beautiful. Using a crock pot is a very good idea.

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  7. I love simple delicious recipes and this one looks amazing. I would love for you to link this or any of your recipes to my recipe blog hop. http://homeandpantry.blogspot.com/2011/01/cuban-style-picadillo.html

    Thanks so much for sharing your recipe.

    ReplyDelete

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