Sunday, 27 January 2013
Nigella's Chicken Tagine
I was quite lucky last year that my Mum managed to get me a beautiful Emille Henry purple tagine with her supermarket loyalty points in France. She got herself a red tagine a couple of years ago with her points then she saw that last year that they were repeating the offer for a purple tagine. I collected the tagine when I went to visit in October and somehow managed to squeeze it into my rucksack so I could bring it back in my hand luggage, I didn't trust it not to get broken in my suitcase. As it's quite big it has to sit on my worktop as I don't enough cupboard space. I love it though and I've made a few different recipes in it already and they've all turned out beautifully. It's very handy to have as well as it's bigger than my 20cm Le Creuset casserole pot that I do most of my cooking in, so I can make extra portions for the freezer.
When I was looking for a recipe for this month's Forever Nigella challenge, I wanted to make something a bit different. I think every entry I've done so far has been some kind of sweet bake. As the theme this month is to make something for the ones you love, I decided to have a look for a good chicken recipe. My boyfriend loves chicken in any shape or form. I know that I can be as experimental as I want and use ingredients he's not keen on, but if it has chicken in it then he will happily eat all of it. I actually made this tagine recipe once a few years ago but didn't think it was spicy enough so I added some extra chilli powder to the cinnamon, cumin and turmeric in the recipe. The recipe for this tagine is in Nigella Lawson's How To Eat book and as I didn't make any major changes to the recipe I'm not going to rewrite it here. I used 8 chicken thighs to make 4 portions although the original recipe uses 10. The chicken thighs are browned and then cooked with garlic, onions, celery and carrots in a mixture of dry white wine and chicken stock. I swapped the dried chickpeas in the recipe for a quarter of a packet of yellow split peas (I soaked these before adding to the tagine) that were lingering in the cupboard. I'm not entirely sure how authentic the use of wine in a tagine is having never visited Morocco, but it gave me the chance to use up the rest of the bottle of wine that I bought for making my random recipe challenge entry. I'm not a big fan of drinking white except in the summer, I much prefer a full bodied red wine instead. I did end up with small glass of wine at the end of this recipe and obviously I had to drink it, would be wrong to waste it and it was quite nice. I then served the tagine on a bed of couscous with a generous sprinkling of fresh coriander.
I'm entering this into Forever Nigella this month hosted by Recipe Junkie and into Herbs on Saturday this month hosted by Bangers & Mash.