The Spice Of Life!

Theme: Spices

This weeks theme is SPICES! I chose to make a traditional Moroccan Chicken tagine dish which calls for a Variety of Moroccan Spice Blends. The most commonly used spices are cumin, salt, pepper, oregano, parsley, coriander, caraway and mint. Second to that is ginger, paprika, turmeric and saffron. There is also a Moroccan spice made from 27 individual spices.

Fun facts about Morocco:

  • Same size as California.
  • Eat with your right hand, thumb and first two fingers only.
  • Bread is always given and never taken.
  • Do not lick your fingers.
  • Any envied object is given away to deter jealousy.
  • Tea is the drink of hospitality and is rude to refuse when offered.

After being sick and my taste buds not working correctly, this was the perfect dish to wake up my senses. The aroma that invades your home and even outside is so amazing! Waiting for it to cook is almost excruciating (hahaha…).
I originally made a version of this dish a couple months ago and used the ingredients and recipe that Try The World box provided. One of the ingredients was a Couscous Onion Raisin Sauce. Which is a key element to this dish. I looked high and low and went to many different grocery stores to find said onion raisin sauce and found non. World Market website said that they did sell it, but for me its about and hour or more trip, so I opted to make my own.

The first thing you need to do if you cannot find a jar version of the onion raisin sauce is to prepare that first.

Raisin Onion Sauce Ingredients:

  • 1 cup raisins
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 4 tablespoons honey
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1/4 teaspoon saffron threads, crumbled
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup water

Raisin Onion Sauce Directions:

1. Add onions, raisins, butter, honey, spices, and water into a sauce pot.

2. Simmer for 20 minutes.

3. Set aside.

Next you need to prepare the chicken.

Chicken Ingredients:

  • 1 Whole Chicken
  • 2 tablespoons harissa sauce
  • 2 tablespoons kefta spice blend
  • 2  garlic cloves, sliced
  • pinch Salt
  • 2 onions, sliced
  • 2 cups raisin onion sauce
  • 5 carrots, cut into matchsticks
  • 4 zucchini, cut into matchsticks
  • 1 cup couscous
  • 4 tablespoons butter

Chicken Directions:
1. Add harissa, kefta spice blend, garlic and salt to a bowl and combine.

2. Massage the paste inside and outside the chicken.

4. Layer the onion onto the bottom of a large tagine. Then add the chicken and onion raisin sauce. Cover and cook over moderate-low heat for 1 hour

5. Carefully remove the lid from the tagine and arrange the carrot and zucchini matchsticks around the chicken. Cover and cook until the chicken is cooked through and the vegetables are tender, about 1 hour.

6. Meanwhile, cook the couscous according to package instructions.

7. Then add butter to couscous.

8. Serve and enjoy!!!



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