a.o.k. "trial" gourmet (23) not so spicy...

For an introduction to the a.o.k. "trial" gourmet series - click here

Some weeks are better than others. Some weeks I'm Mrs. Organized...everything falls in to place as it should... I don't run late for work in the morning... I have my meals all planned out in advance... My clothes are cleaned and ironed and I'm... ready... ready for whatever life is going to throw at me.

Some weeks are harder. Nothing goes right... I can't get organized... dinners end up being thrown together last minute... I feel like I'm always late and I barely feel like trying to be better at it all.

You win some and you lose some, right? Well it certainly seems like I've been "losing" more than winning in my "trial" gourmet series these days. This week it's not the recipe though - it's my inability to follow instructions.

In an effort to be more organized (and in hopes that Brandon would actually enjoy this weeks new recipe) I had Brandon look through my recipe books before I made my weekly trip to the grocery store.  He picked a spicy chicken tagine with apricots, rosemary and ginger. The picture was AWESOME and doesn't the title sound delicious?

I thought we had a winner. Had it been someone else cooking... we may have... in fact I'm almost sure we would have. I unfortunately made the mistake of adding too much liquid to the tagine, diluting the flavors. My end results wasn't bad, it just didn't live up to our expectations. The liquid left over in my dutch oven - now that was tasty - it reminded me of a sweet and spicy thai soup.

spicy chicken tagine with apricots, rosemary, and ginger

2 tablespoons olive oil with a pat of butter
1 onion, finely chopped
3 sprigs of rosemary, 1 finely chopped, the other 2 cut in half
1 1/2 inches fresh ginger, peeled and finely chopped
2 red chiles, seeded and finely chopped
1-2 cinnamon sticks
8 chicken thighs
3/4 cup dried apricots
2 tablespoons clear honey
14 oz canned plum tomatoes with their juice
sea salt and freshly ground pepper
small bunch of basil leaves

Heat the oil and butter in heavy-based casserole dish
Stir in the onion, chopped rosemary, ginger and chiles
Sauté until the onion begins to soften
Stir in the halved rosemary sprigs and cinnamon sticks

Add the chicken thighs and brown on both sides
Toss in the apricots with the honey, then stir in the plum tomatoes and their juice

Add water if necessary, to ensure there is enough liquid to cover the base of the tagine (or dish) and submerge the apricots (...Here is where I think I went wrong. I read "cover the base of the tagine" and understood cover the base of the stew instead of the dish - as tagine is used interchangeably to mean the moroccan dish that this type of meal would be cooked in and the dish/meal itself. I added too much water and this may have been why the meal didn't turn out as I was hoping...)

Bring the liquid to boil, then reduce the heat.
Cover witha lid and cook gently for 35-40 minutes
Season to taste with salt and pepper
Shred larger basil leaves and leave smaller ones intact
Sprinkle basil over chicken and serve immediately.


Aimée said...

You're so hard on your self! It looks super good and I love those flavors...

Anonymous said...

What did the kids think of it?

A. said...

the problem was that because I added so much liquid, the chicken didn't really pick up the flavor. The liquid in the pot... like I said... was AWESOME.

The kids liked it. The Chicken was super tender - very easy for Meaghan to eat.

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