This easy Moroccan dish really packs a punch- bright, vibrant flavours (and colours) that wow with a very minimal amount of effort. I often make this for dinner guests because it’s exotic and flavourful without being spicy.
I usually serve this dish with chelo, a buttery crisped Persian rice. Chelo is amazingly delicious but can be a little finicky- I promise I will post it one of these days. In the meantime, if any of you are curious might I recommend Najmieh Batmanglij’s New Food of Life- not only is it a spectacular cookbook but she outlines techniques to make chelo on both a stovetop and in a rice cooker. Magic.
If you’re looking for something a little simpler (and more traditional- last time I checked Morocco and Iran weren’t neighbours), this dish is great over regular steamed rice or couscous. Roast up some carrots with a little mint or toss together a nice green salad with some orange segments and you’ve got yourself a lovely Moroccan feast!
A lot of Moroccan recipes call for preserved lemons, which you can buy at places like Whole Foods or other specialty stores. Honestly- I just make ‘em myself. They really are dead easy to make so whenever lemons are on sale I re-stock my reserves. Preserved lemons will keep in your fridge for up to 6 months so they are a great pantry staple if you’re a fan of their zippy flavour!
- 3 cloves garlic, crushed
- 1.5 tsp cumin
- 1 tsp ground ginger
- ½ tsp paprika
- ½ tsp turmeric
- ¼ tsp cinnamon
- ¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 2 Tbs olive oil
- 10-15 dried apricots
- ⅛ cup dried cranberries
- ⅛ cup dried currants
- 1 preserved lemon- peel only, sliced into strips
- 6-8 chicken thighs
- In a large bowl mix all marinade ingredients together then add chicken, coating thoroughly. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour, up to 24 hours.
- Once the chicken is marinated, remove from fridge. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat and place chicken in, skin side down (if your chicken thighs have skin). Brown for 5 minutes then flip with tongs.
- Sprinkle apricots, cranberries, currants and preserved lemon peel over the chicken. Do not stir. Turn the heat down to med-low and cover, cooking for an additional 20 minutes. If the mixture appears too dry add ⅛ cup water.
- Serve with rice, chelo (persian rice pilaf) or couscous.