Chicken Tangine, Eggplant and Olives

Since I posted about chicken yesterday, I thought I’d do it again and include a very nice recipe that Florence Fabricant has put together in the New York Times called Chicken Tagine. She talks about the origin of the seasoning for this dish and also the importance of having a tagine. I’ve pasted the recipe below. I hope our chefs enjoy reading about this recipe and someone enjoys it soon.

Chicken Tagine With Eggplant and Olives

Time: 11/2 hours

2 tablespoons ground cumin

1 tablespoon smoked paprika

1 chicken, cut in 10 pieces

3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 medium red onion, quartered lengthwise

2 small eggplants, about 1 pound total, quartered lengthwise

3 garlic cloves, slivered

1/3 cup pitted black niçoise olives

1/2 cup chicken stock

2 tablespoons sherry vinegar

Salt and black pepper

1 tablespoon chopped tarragon, plus a few sprigs for garnish

Rice or couscous for serving.

1. On a plate, blend the cumin and paprika together. Dip the chicken pieces in spices to coat both sides. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large, heavy skillet over medium-high heat and brown chicken on both sides. Remove.

2. Add the onions to the skillet and sear on cut sides until browned. Remove. Lower heat to medium and add remaining 2 tablespoons oil. Lightly brown eggplant on cut sides. Remove. Add garlic and olives, cook until the garlic has softened, then add the stock and vinegar. Bring to a simmer, deglazing the pan, then turn off the heat.

3. Coarsely chop the browned onions. Scatter them in a terra-cotta tagine or in a sauté pan with a cover, then lay the chicken pieces on top. Chop the eggplant in 1-inch chunks and distribute them over the chicken. Pour stock mixture, with olives and garlic, on top. Season with salt and pepper and scatter chopped tarragon on top. Cover the tagine or pan and cook on medium-low heat for 40 minutes. Remove from heat and let rest 10 minutes. Garnish with tarragon sprigs and serve with rice or couscous.

Yield: 4 servings.

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