Sunday, January 8, 2012

Spiced Chicken With Dates

4 T extra virgin olive oil
salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 chicken, cut up
2 medium to large chopped yellow onions
2 bay leaves
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2/3 cup of long grain rice
1/3 cup of red or green lentils, rinsed
3 cups of chicken stock, hot
12 dates, pitted
1 small bunch fresh coriander, stalks removed, leaves picked and torn
1 1/2 T blanched almonds, toasted

Preparing the chicken:
Heat the oil over a medium-high heat in a large casserole. Season the chicken, brown all over and set aside.

Lower the heat and tip the onions and bay leaves into the pan. Sauté, stirring from time to time, until the onions are soft and translucent, about 15 minutes. Add the garlic, cumin, ground coriander and cinnamon, and stir for a couple of minutes. Add the rice and lentils, stir for a minute until everything is well coated. Return the chicken to the pan, pour over the hot stock, season, cover and simmer gently for 15 minutes. Stir in the dates, cover again and simmer for 15 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through and the rice and lentils are tender. Remove from the heat, taste and adjust the seasoning, and stir in most of the fresh coriander. Serve with the remaining coriander and flaked almonds scattered over the top.

Serves 4 to 6


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