15 Nov A Taste of Morocco
This delectable recipe from Susan Spungen of Food and Wine takes the flavors of a spice market in Northern Africa and merges them into a chicken dish that is beautifully balanced with a sweetness of dried apricots and honey, a savory texture of shallots and green olives and a pungent aroma that brings to mind the smells and sights of Marrakesh. Gorgeous on the plate and lively on the palate, this is a recipe worth repeating!
Moroccan Chicken with Apricot-and-Olive Relish (Serves 4)
- ¼ cup eucalyptus honey
- ¼ cup plus 1 tablespoon canola oil
- 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger
- 1 garlic clove (minced)
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- ½ teaspoon ground coriander
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon sweet pimentón de la Vera (smoked Spanish paprika)
- 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
- 8 chicken thighs on the bone, with skin (2 3/4 pounds)
- Boiling water
- 1 cup dried apricots
- 2 medium shallots (thinly sliced)
- 20 green olives (such as Cerignola or Picholine, pitted)
- 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
- In a bowl, whisk the honey with 1/4 cup of the canola oil and the lemon juice, grated ginger, garlic, cumin, coriander, cinnamon, pimentón, cayenne, salt and pepper. Arrange the chicken in a glass baking dish. Pour the marinade on top and turn to coat. Refrigerate for 2 hours, turning once.
- Preheat the oven to 400°. Drain the chicken and transfer to a rimmed baking sheet; reserve the marinade. Cover with foil and bake for about 35 minutes, until cooked through. Remove the foil and discard any juices from the baking sheet.
- Meanwhile, in a small bowl, pour boiling water over the apricots to cover and let stand until plump, 8 minutes; drain.
- In a skillet, heat the remaining 1 tablespoon of oil. Add the shallots and cook over moderate heat until softened, 6 minutes. Add the apricots, olives and the reserved marinade and bring to a simmer. Cook over moderately high heat until the marinade is thickened and glazes the apricots and olives, 2 minutes. Stir in the cilantro.
- Turn on oven broiler or preheat a grill pan. Broil or grill the chicken over moderately high heat, turning once, until charred in spots and the skin is crisp, 6 minutes. Transfer to plates, top with the apricot-olive relish and serve.
Special Note: Feature Image for this blog post courtesy of Rudy and Peter Skitterians at Pixabay.