Here’s why I will never be a great food blogger, a la Smitten Kitchen or Pioneer Woman: I make things up. All the time. I may start with a recipe, but the way that I cook usually makes it hard to measure amounts and is generally not replicable. I don’t think I’ve ever made the same thing twice. Even when baking I play a little fast and loose, which is NOT what you’re supposed to do. Baking is an exact science.
I also drive this way when we don’t have the GPS on. It amazes JD. If we hit a lot of traffic on a road going north, I just get off the highway and drive til I find another large-ish road going north. As long as I’m going in the same general direction, I figure I’ll get there eventually.
So, yeah. Needs some heat? I’m sprinkling cayenne and red pepper flakes. Pan looks dry? Another few squirts of oil! No measuring. And this is what happened with this recipe. I will make some valiant attempts at measurement guesses, but I also urge you to play yourself. Taste a little too sweet? Up the cumin. The flavor profile of this dish is really rich and deep and a nice change from our usual Italian-Mexican-whatever flavors. This dish is one of our favorites and quite adaptable. Make it more hot, use frozen veggies instead of fresh, switch up the broccoli for some corn. You could even take out the chicken entirely and use veggie broth to make it vegetarian-suitable. The world is your Moroccan Stew!
Moroccan Chicken Stew
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 2 hours or more
Yield: Serves 4
- Canola oil
- 4 chicken thighs (I used bone-in)
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 sweet potatoes, peeled and diced
- 1 small onion
- 1 can garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 cup broccoli (or zucchini), cut into bite-size pieces
- 1 jalapeno (optional)
- 2 cups spinach or kale
- 1-2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
- 1 can diced tomatoes (with juice)
- 1 TBSP cinnamon
- 1 TBSP cumin
- 1 tsp cayenne pepper
- salt and pepper
- 1 cup whole wheat couscous, cooked according to package directions
- In a big old pot or dutch oven, heat 1 tablespoon canola oil over medium-high heat. Salt and pepper the chicken thighs.
- Once the oil is hot, add the chicken and brown on both sides, 2-3 minutes on each side. Remove chicken from pan and turn heat down to medium.
- Add a little more oil if needed and add onions, sweet potatoes and broccoli. Cook, stirring occasionally, until onions are slightly browned and vegetables begin to soften. Add garbanzo beans, jalapeno, and garlic, cook until fragrant.
- Turn heat to low. Add greens and mix until starting to wilt, then pour in broth and tomatoes.
- Add spices and stir to combine. “Nest” chicken thighs into the liquid and cover. Let simmer for an hour or two. Every 20 minutes or so, uncover to stir and check on seasoning. Adjust as needed. (NB: Seriously, adjust the sh*t out of that stew. I was sprinkling and pinch-ing all over the place.)
- When ready to serve, you can either leave the thighs whole or shred the meat and incorporate it. I prefer the latter, especially if the stews been simmering for a while since the meat will be falling off the bone anyway. Serve over couscous.