Baked Moroccan Chicken - Wine Dine With Jeff

INGREDIENTS

  • 3 1/2 to 4 Pounds of Chicken Pieces (Used 2 Breasts, 2 Thighs and 2 Drumettes) Bone-In Skin attached
  • 2 Tablespoons of Olive oil
  • 16 Oz of chopped yellow onion ( used 1 Large onion)
  • 4 Cloves of garlic minced
  • 1 1/2 Teaspoons of Turmeric
  • 1 1/2 Teaspoons of Cumin
  • 1 1/2 Teaspoons of sweet Paprika
  • 1 1/2 Teaspoons of ground Coriander
  • 1 Teaspoon of Salt plus 1/2 Teaspoon of ground black pepper
  • 1 Teaspoon of ground Ginger
  • 1 Cinnamon stick
  • 1/2 Cup of green olives about 16 olives
  • 5 Dried apricots slices
  • 1 Lemon the zest in large strips and juice from the whole lemon
  • 6 Oz of chicken stock
  • 8 Oz of tomato sauce

Directions

  • 1. Moroccan chicken is all about the spice blend called Ras el hanout. What I love about this recipe is that most of all these spices, you already have in the pantry. Ras el hanout is a spice blend from North Africa, where it is used heavily in Moroccan cooking. The blend is full of warm spices that give it a robust, but slightly sweet flavor. The name translates from Arabic to “head of the shop”. ... In essence, ras el hanout is the “house” spice blend of Moroccan spice shops. Ras El Hanout is a combination of ground cumin, paprika, ground coriander, ground turmeric, , ground ginger, and cinnamon. If you are great at butchering a whole chicken that is the best and cheapest way because we are using all the parts from a whole chicken except the wings. You can purchase Bone-In skin on chicken breast, thighs and drumettes.
  • 2. In a bowl combine all the spices for the dry rub, Turmeric, Ground Coriander, Sweet Paprika, Ground Cumin , Ground Ginger, salt and Pepper. Mix together all the spices and take one piece of chicken at a time and coat the skin side and the opposite side of the chicken so that all parts of the chicken is covered in this spice blend. Cover with plastic wrap and place in the fridge for 2 hours to let the dry rub penetrate the chicken.
  • 3. While the chicken is marinating in the fridge for 2 hours perfect time to prep the rest of the ingredients. Chop up 1 large yellow onion and mince 4 garlic cloves. Take the lemon and with a potato peeler zest in large pieces like below. Remember only zest the yellow parts of the lemon not the bitter white parts. After you finished zesting the lemon then squeeze the juice out of the lemon. You should have at least 2 tablespoons of juice from the lemon. Slice up the dried apricots I used a Turkish dried apricot but any dried apricot will work perfect. I also used Divina Greek green olives, they don't have pimentos like the American green olives but anyone will work in this recipe. But I prefer the taste of the Greek olives in this recipe.
  • 4. After the Chicken is finished marinating pull it out of the fridge 30 minutes before you place it in the pan. I am using a Flat Dutch oven with a tight fitting lid. This is taking place of the normal Tagine Pot that the original dish is cooked in. You don't have to run out and buy a tagine. The Dutch oven will work very close to the same end result. The Tagine keeps the moisture in and so does the Dutch Oven. Another import thing the tagine does is the moisture rises up on the dome and self-bastes the meat without removing the lid. The Dutch oven does the same. Turn the burner on medium high heat add 2 tablespoons of olive oil and when the oil start to shimmer place the chicken skin side down first. Cook from 5 to 6 minutes until you have a great golden brown color on the skin and then flip the chicken and cook for 3 minutes on the opposite side. Remove from the pan and set aside. The Chicken will finish cooking in the oven. Have the oven preheated to 350 Degrees Fahrenheit.
  • 5. In the same Dutch oven that you browned the chicken in turn the burner down to medium heat. There will be excess fat that has rendered out of the chicken skins. If you want a lighter dish in fat you can remove most of the fat but leave 2 tablespoons for cooking the onions. I leave all the rendered fat in the pan for flavor. Add the chopped onions and cook them for 2 minutes when they are finished cooking add the garlic and stir in with the onion and cook for 1 minute. Pour in the chicken stock along with the tomato sauce and stir to combine all the ingredients. This is a perfect time to scrape up the brown bits at the bottom of the pan with the added liquid. Add the dried apricots, olives, lemon zest. lemon juice and cinnamon stick stir to combine and bring back to a low simmer with a few bubbles.
  • 6. When the sauce comes up to a low simmer add the browned chicken parts back to the pan skin side up. Place the tight fitting lid on the Dutch oven and cook for 1 hour on 350 Degrees Fahrenheit. If you want crispy chicken skin after 1 hour remove the lid from the pan and Broil the chicken for a few minutes until the skin is nice and crispy. Garnish with cilantro. I love to make a rice to soak up all the delicious flavors in the sauce. This is my new favorite way to cook chicken.

Recipe Video:

Baked Moroccan Chicken

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