Friday, March 28, 2008

Chicken Tagine with Apricots and Almonds

Recipe: Chicken Tagine with Apricots and Almonds

I was in the mood for something different. I bought a book on curry recently, but once I started reading it I didn’t want to stop to look for a recipe. There will be a lot of curry recipes here in the near future, I think. But for tonight, I decided to make a chicken tagine.

This recipe was adapted from one gleaned out of the pages of Gourmet magazine. I used cubes of chicken breast and thigh instead of cutting apart a whole chicken, which also made the cooking time faster. I eliminated the butter and 90.5% of the olive oil (it sounds so much better in percentages than if I had said “I eliminated over 6 tablespoons of the oil”) from the original recipe.

A note: I love my Kitchen Aid hard-anodized nonstick sauté pan. I probably use it six times a week for dinner, and it has served me well. I bought it at TJ Maxx for around $20 over a year ago. You can get away with using lots less oil and butter when you have a nonstick pan!

This was an incredibly good meal. The chicken was tender, the apricots added a nice sweet taste, the almonds a very satisfying crunch, and I served it all over whole wheat couscous to soak up the wonderful cinnamon-ey sauce.

* Exported from MasterCook *

Chicken Tagine

with Apricots and Almonds

Recipe adapted from Gourmet May 2006

Servings: 2

Amount Measure Ingredient -- Preparation Method

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1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon ground ginger

1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric

1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon honey

1 piece cinnamon stick -- 2"

1/3 cup dried apricot halves

2 teaspoons olive oil -- divided

10 ounces boneless skinless chicken breast -- cut into 1" cubes

1 small sweet onion -- halved then sliced 1/4" thick

3 large garlic cloves -- minced

1 tablespoon chopped cilantro

2 tablespoons chopped parsley -- divided

2 tablespoons whole almonds -- toasted

1 cup whole wheat couscous

Mix cinnamon thru salt in a small bowl. Add chicken cubes and turn to coat on all sides.

Pour 1/2 cup of water into a small saucepan. Bring to a boil and add honey, cinnamon stick, and apricot halves. Turn heat to low and cook until apricots are tender, about 10 minutes. The water and honey should turn to a thick glaze. Turn off heat and cover pan to keep warm.

Heat a nonstick skillet over medium heat; add 1 teaspoon of the olive oil, then the chicken cubes. Cook, stirring often, until lightly browned. Remove chicken to a plate, then add the remaining teaspoon of olive oil and the sliced onion to the skillet. Continue to cook and stir for another 3 minutes. Stir in garlic and cook for another 2 minutes. Add cilantro, one tablespoon of the parsley, 1/2 cup water, chicken, and bring to a boil. Cover, turn heat to low, simmer for 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, prepare couscous.

Discard cinnamon stick from apricot mixture. Pour the glaze into the chicken mixture and stir until combined. Serve over couscous, sprinkle with remaining parsley, then toasted almonds.

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Per serving: 459 Calories (kcal); 15g Total Fat (2g saturated); (27% calories from fat); 38g Protein; 49g Carbohydrate; 82mg Cholesterol; 641mg Sodium

Food Exchanges: 1/2 Grain(Starch); 5 Lean Meat; 1 Vegetable; 1 1/2 Fruit; 2 1/2 Fat; 1/2 Other Carbohydrates