Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Moroccan Spiced Chicken Braise with Figs

Featured Ingredient: Figs

As a part of my mission to expand the list of canned good options for this blog, I give you the following recipe.  It is inspired by a Chicken Tagine recipe I made in Culinary School.

My first impression of these figs was not what I expected.  While they are in light syrup, the flavor they gave off was more of a salty brine with a teeny bit of sweet.  I had found a similar recipe for Moroccan Chicken that used green olives, but after tasting the figs, I think I had that color and flavor covered, so I did without the olives.  I added golden raisins for additional sweetness.   The addition of the almonds was my own inspiration.  Not only are they good for you, but if you are nuts over nuts, they work really well with this dish and add a nice delicate texture.

Moroccan Spiced Chicken Braise with Figs

Olive oil as needed
2 lbs bone in chicken thighs without skin
1 3/4 cup Spanish onion chopped
1/2 tsp powdered ginger
1/2 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp coriander
1 tbsp honey
2 cups chicken broth
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
1 15oz can Figs, cut into bite sized pieces (about 1 1/4 cup)
1/2 cup golden raisins
Sliced almonds for garnish

Heat a small amount of olive oil in a deep skillet or wide rondeau on medium high heat.  Season chicken with salt and pepper.  "Brown" chicken until lightly golden on each side, but not cooked through. Remove to another pan.

Lower heat to medium and add the onion and sweat until translucent. Add ginger, cumin, cinnamon, turmeric, coriander and cook about 2 more minutes, until fragrant.  Add broth, honey and bring mixture to a boil, then reduce to simmer.

Return chicken pieces to pan and simmer chicken bone side up for about 15 minutes.  Turn pieces over and add figs, and raisins.  Simmer an additional 10 minutes until chicken registers at 180F.  Sprinkle with cilantro and slivered almonds if desired for additional texture.

Serve with Israeli Couscous

Moroccan Spiced Chicken Braise with Figs

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