Friday, November 26, 2010

Four reasons to make Braised Chicken
with Dates and Moroccan Spices

Braised Chicken with Dates and Moroccan Spices (click for the recipe) from Bon Appetit magazine has so much going for it, I don’t quite know where to start.
   First, it’s delicious. Every bite was amazing. I had to close my eyes several times to savour the taste of juicy chicken and dates clothed in ginger and cinnamon.
   Second, it would work for a dinner party. It is impressive, but not pretentious.
   Third, it feeds six without a lot of extra work, making it a good recipe if you have guests. If you don’t have six to feed, it can easily be cut back.
   However, this is more of a dish for adults. It’s not overly spicy or anything like that, it’s just more suited to an adult palate.
   Fourth, it’s not very difficult to make, but it does take some time, particularly the part when the chicken is initially browned. If you use more than one skillet to brown the chicken, though, this process will go more quickly.
   The recipe says to serve the chicken with couscous. My husband and I served it with jasmine rice instead, and it worked beautifully.
   The recipe calls for two pounds of shallots, or 11 large shallots, for six servings. Ignore the pound measure and use the number instead – two pounds of shallots is a lot!
   Since we cut back the recipe to four servings instead of six, we also cut back the cooking time for the shallots from 18 minutes to about 10 minutes.
   We used parsley instead of cilantro.
   To make the dish, chicken pieces such as halves, thighs and drumsticks are browned in a large heavy pot, then transferred to a platter.
   Shallots, cinnamon sticks, ginger, cumin, turmeric, cayenne, chicken broth and lemon juice are added and simmered until the shallots begin to soften.
   The chicken pieces are placed on top of the shallots and simmered, then both the chicken and the shallots are transferred to a platter.
   The juices left behind in the pot are boiled until slightly thickened, then pitted dates and more lemon juice are added and simmered gently for a short time. The sauce is poured over chicken, which is then sprinkled with almonds and parsley (or cilantro.)

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1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Mandy, I'm just wondering if you think this dish will freeze well(Braised chicken with moroccan spices) I made it yesterday and loved it. I'd like to make a larger quantity and freeze. Thanks