Monday, April 19, 2010

Chickpea Tagine With Chicken and Apricots

This is another weekend recipe from Mark Bittman's The Minimalist column.
This turned out wonderfully, and I'll definitely be making it again with some twists.
I followed the recipe pretty closely, though substituted chicken breasts for the legs, and also added a significant amount of heat with some cayenne pepper and red pepper flakes.
He recommends using the recipe as a basic template, but following it as is is a pretty good too!

2 tablespoons olive oil (I only used 1 Tbsp and some Pam)
4 skinless chicken thighs (I used skinless boneless breasts)
1 large onion, chopped
1 tablespoon minced garlic (used a little more...)
1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger
1 1/2 teaspoons ground coriander
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper (optional)
1 tsp crushed red pepper flakes (optional)
1/2 cup chopped dried apricots
1 cup chopped tomato (fresh or canned or boxed, with juice)
2 cups cooked or canned chickpeas, drained, with the liquid reserved
1 to 2 cups chicken stock, bean liquid or water, or more as needed
1/2 cup couscous
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley, for garnish.

1. Put oil in a large, deep pot over medium-high heat. When oil is shimmering, add chicken and brown well on both sides; remove from pan and set aside. Reduce heat to medium, add onion to the pan and cook until soft, about 5 minutes; add garlic, ginger, coriander, cumin, cinnamon, dried apricots and tomato. Cook and stir just long enough to loosen any brown bits from bottom of pan.
2. Add chickpeas and 1 cup of stock or bean liquid to the pan and turn heat back to medium-high. When mixture reaches a gentle bubble, return chicken to the pan. Cover pot, turn heat to low and cook, checking occasionally to make sure the mixture is bubbling gently, for about 15 minutes or until tomatoes break down and flavors begin to meld. Stir in couscous, adding more stock if necessary so that the mixture is covered with about an inch of liquid. Season with salt and pepper.
3. Cover and cook until the chicken and bulgur are both done, about 10 to 15 minutes. Taste, adjust the seasonings and serve in bowls garnished with parsley.
Yield: 4 servings.

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