Saturday, February 10, 2007

A Bright Winter Meal

Chicken thighs are so terribly underrated. The meat is tender and juicy, and can be stewed for long periods of time without getting dry and chalky. It seems to have more chicken-y flavor. Thighs are used to great success in this Cooking Light recipe, a tagine of chicken and the bright flavors of lemon, ginger, garlic, olives, and cilantro. Even though the dish has to simmer for an hour, if you've got the time, the recipe's great for a weeknight. I made this on Monday.

Chicken Tagine with Lemon and Olives

2 T. fresh lemon juice
12 skinless, boneless chicken thighs
1/4 cup white whole-wheat flour
1/2 t. salt
1/4 t. black pepper
1/4 t. ground turmeric
1/2 t. cayenne
2 t. olive oil
2 cups chopped onion (about 2)
1 t. minced peeled fresh ginger
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup chicken stock or broth
1/4 cup pitted green olives, halved
2 t. grated lemon rind
1 (3-inch) cinnamon stick
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
Whole-wheat couscous, for serving

Combine juice and chicken in a large zip-top plastic bag. Seal and marinate in a refrigerator 30 minutes. Remove chicken from bag; discard marinade.

Mix flour and spices. Dredge chicken thighs in flour. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add chicken in batches, cook 3 minutes per side, until browned. Remove from pan and repeat procedure with remaining chicken.

Add onion, ginger, and garlic to pan; saute 5 minutes or until tender. Return chicken to pan. Add broth, olives, rind, and cinnamon stick; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 1 hour or until chicken is tender. Discard the cinnamon stick; stir in cilantro. Serve over hot couscous.

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