Tuesday, October 2, 2018

Chicken Tagine

My seven year old comes home with new food requests every day— a dish or a cuisine. Lately, the request has been Moroccan— such as Orange and Carrot Salad, Moroccan grilled shrimp, and Ras-al-Hanout spiced grilled fish. 

This Chicken Tagine was delicious, and a great way to serve the whole family with one pot. 

Now, normally I would love to run out, and buy a gorgeous Tagine, especially that beautiful shiny Le Creuset one that always catches my eye as I walk through Sur La Table… but decided to give it a go in my dutch oven, which was a great substitute. 

Serves 4
30 minutes active time
1 hour inactive

6–8 chicken drumsticks, bone-on, skin-off

Fresh parsley and fresh cilantro, about 1 cup, chopped fine
2 cloves garlic, grated
1 large preserved lemon, (use the flesh for the marinade, set aside the skins)
2 teaspoons paprika
2 teaspoons ginger powder
1 teaspoons cumin powder
1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
1 tablespoon Ras-al-Hanout 
Saffron, generous pinch, soaked in 1 tablespoon hot water
3 tablespoons olive oil
Salt and pepper, to taste

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 onion, grated
Half red pepper, julienned

Cinnamon stick
Lemon juice, to taste
8oz chickpeas
8oz artichokes or pitted olives

1/2 cup pistachios 
Store-bough Harissa


  1. Mix the marinade ingredients in a large bowl. Add the chicken and let it marinade for at least an hour. 
  2. In a large heavy bottomed pot, heat a tablespoon of olive oil. Add the chicken and let it brown. 
  3. Once browned, set the chicken to the side of the tagine and let the onions lightly brown in the chicken fat, along with the julienned red peppers.
  4. Add the remaining ingredients— cinnamon stick, lemon juice, chickpeas, and artichokes or olives. Let it come to a boil, then cover and let it simmer for a half hour. While it simmers, check your tagine. 
  5. Once chicken is done, taste the sauce and season accordingly. Remember, the preserved lemons are salty.
  6. Serve over couscous or with crusty bread on the side, garnished with coarsely crushed pistachios and a dollop of Harissa.

Sunday, June 17, 2018

Spaghetti with Clams, in a Herb-Purée

This fathers day, my husband asked for a quiet lazy morning at home. He lay in bed and watched Germany play Mexico at the 2018 FIFA World Cup, while the children and I set the table with handmade place cards, flowers, and made him one of his favorite pastas! Spaghetti with Clams, in a herb purée. The hot pepper was served as a garnish for just us. 

Involving the children in this one was easy. They got to pick the herbs, and then after I washed it, they put it in the blender, pulsed the blender, and more. This whole process also got my four-year-old twin daughters to try clams with no fuss. 

The kids got a kick out of seeing the clams open up as it steamed. One of my four-year olds even asked me if it was opening up to bite them! 

This recipe is inspired by one I read in NY Times, and we all highly recommend it! 

4 to 6 servings. |  Time: About 30 minutes

For herb purée
1 cup basil leaves
1 cup Italian parsley leaves
6 garlic cloves, smashed to a paste
1/4 cup olive oil
Salt and pepper, to taste

For the pasta
1 pound spaghetti or linguine 
3 tablespoons olive oil
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon fennel seeds
4 pounds small clams, such as little neck or Manila, rinsed of sand
1/4 cup dry white wine
1/4 cup chicken stock

Basil leaves, for garnish
Lemon wedges, for garnish 
Hot red pepper flakes, for garnish

  1. Make the purée: Grind the purée ingredients until combined, to desired consistency.
  2. Boil the pasta: For a minute less than the package directions for al dente. The pasta will continue to cook when you toss it with the clams, so stop it ahead of al dente. 
  3. While the pasta boils: Heat the olive oil in a heavy wide-bottomed pot with a lid over medium-high heat. Add minced garlic, fennel seed, and let sizzle without browning, about 1 minute. Add clams. Raise heat to high, add wine and stock, put on the lid. Cook, covered, until all clams have opened, 5 to 7 minutes. Turn off heat. (Discard any clams that fail to open.)
  4. Add cooked pasta and herb purée to pot and toss gently to combine. Transfer to a serving bowl. Garnish with basil leaves and lemon wedges, serve pepper flakes on the side.