August 15, 2008

Algerian Chicken Tagine With Apricots And Spiced Pine Nuts

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This North African chicken tagine or tajin recipe by Farid Zadi is adapted from the February 2008 issue of Gourmet magazine. According to the cookbook FROM THE LANDS OF FIGS AND OLIVES, the North African tajin differs slightly from the tajin of the Middle East. In North Africa they use more herbs and spices. I love this recipe for its sweetish sauce, the subtle spices that blend so well together, and the crunch of the spiced pine nuts.

Chicken Tagine With Apricots And Pine Nuts
1 whole chicken, about 3½ pounds
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
3 large shallots, finely chopped
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon grated peeled ginger
¼ teaspoon turmeric
¼ teaspoon sweet paprika
Pinch of saffron (optional)
1 cup water
2 tablespoons bitter-orange marmalade
1 two-inch cinnamon stick
1 thyme sprig
2 cilantro sprigs
6 dried apricots. chopped
1 tablespoon finely chopped cilantro

spiced pine nuts
1 tablespoon olive oil
¼ cup pine nuts
¼ teaspoon turmeric
¼ teaspoon sweet paprika
pinch of cayenne (optional)

lemon wedges
  • Tagine: Cut out chicken into serving pieces. Pat chicken pieces dry and sprinkle with 1 tsp salt. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a skillet over medium heat and brown chicken pieces. In a 6-quart pot, saute shallots in the butter and remaining oil, stirring frequently until soft, about 8 minutes. Add garlic, ginger, turmeric, and paprika, and stir fry for 3 minutes. Add the browned chicken, saffron, and ½ tsp salt coating chicken well. Add water and bring to a boil. Cover and simmer for 30 minutes. Turn chicken and add orange preserves, cinnamon stick, thyme cilantro, and apricots. Simmer, covered, for 10 minutes. Uncover and simmer until chicken is very tender, about 15 minutes more.
  • Prepare pine nuts while chicken cooks: Heat oil in a small skillet over medium heat then stir in pine nuts. turmeric, paprika, and cayenne if using, stirring frequently, until nuts are lightly browned, about 1 to 2 minutes.
  • To serve: Transfer chicken to a platter, keep warm. Boil the sauce and reduce to 1 cup. Discard herb sprigs and cinnamon stick. Stir in chopped cilantro and spoon sauce over the chicken. Sprinkle with nuts.


eatingclubvancouver_js said...

Thanks for sharing this recipe. It's bookmarked. Yummy-looking chicken!

Anonymous said...

that looks so yummy! if only we'd have the ingredients here ... looks like it will be a hit with my food adventurous family. :)

thanks for joining this week, Oggi!
happy friday!

Oggi said...

JS, thanks and you're welcome. Hope you like it.:)

Maiylah, you might find some of the ingredients perhaps at Rustan's or Cash and Carry.

JMom said...

This looks really delicious! I'm saving this one for another variation on the tired ol' chicken dish :) Thanks for the recipe!

Oggi said...

JMom, change is good once in a while.:)

Chibog in Chief said...

with couscous this is perfect!! i love the idea of spiced pine nuts!

Oggi said...

Dhanggit, the spiced pine nuts add a little something to this already yummy dish.

test it comm said...

This sounds good. I like the use of apricots in a savoury dish like this.

Oggi said...

Kevin, the apricots give a little bit of sweetness and I like that it is not overdone. This recipe has the perfect amount of everything.:)

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