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Moroccan Style Chicken with Couscous with Harissa Yogurt

June 18, 2018

1 pound chicken breast

2 teaspoons cinnamon

1 teaspoon groud cumin

1 teaspoon ground ginger

1 teaspoon salt

3 tablespoons extra light olive oil

1 large onion, chopped

3 garlic cloves, grated

1 14 ounces chopped tomatoes

½ cup dried apricots, sliced

1 14 ounces can chickpeas, washed and drained

1 to 2 tablespoons honey

1 cup chicken stock


1/3 cup cilantro, chopped

1/3 cup parsley, chopped

Mix the cinnamon, ground cumin, ground ginger and salt in a small bowl. Sprinkle the chicken breasts with the spice mixture and let stand for 2 hours.

Heat a wide saucepan with olive oil and brown the chicken breasts on high heat for 2 to 3 minutes on each side. Take out of the pan and keep aside. Reheat the pan and add the onion and garlic. Saute on medium heat for 3 to 4 minutes, stirring every 30 seconds. Add the tomatoes and continue to cook for another 2 to 3 minutes. Add apricots, chickpeas, honey and chicken stock. Bring to a boil and lower heat to a simmer and cover with lid and cook for 45 minutes, checking every 15 minutes. In the meantime, slice the browned, uncooked chicken into slices. Take the lid off and add the chicken. Cook on medium heat for 3 to 5 minutes till the chicken is cooked through. Check for seasonings and add salt as needed. Garnish with cilantro and parsley. Serve with couscous and yogurt sauce.

Pine Nut Couscous

  • 2 tablespoons extra light olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/3 cup pine nuts
  • 1 teaspoons salt
  • 1½ cup chicken stock
  • 1½ cup couscous
  • 1/3 cup parsley, chopped
  • 1/3 cup cilantro, chopped

Heat a medium saucepan with the oil. Add the ground cinnamon, cumin, pine nuts and salt. Saute on medium heat for 30 seconds. Add the chicken stock and cover with lid and bring to a boil. Add the couscous, turn heat off and cover with lid. Cook for 5 minutes.  Fluff with fork, check seasonings and garnish with parsley and cilantro.

Harissa Yogurt Sauce

  • ½ cup plain yogurt
  • 2 teaspoons harissa sauce
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Juice of half a lemon

Mix all the ingredients and serve with the chicken and couscous.


Moroccan Style Chicken with Vegetable Couscous

March 23, 2016

I love, love harissa- it is a Moroccan style sauce with lots of flavor including some spice and sweet red peppers. It is a great way to infuse loads of flavor if roasting or grilling meats, poultry or seafood…

  • 4 to 6 chicken thighs, bone in with skin on
  • 2 tablespoons harissa
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 preserved lemon, chopped fine
  • 1 teaspoon salt

Mix the harissa, oil, preserved lemon and salt in a small bowl and marinate the chicken with the mixture for 2 to 3 hours.

  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 large yellow onion, chopped into 1 inch squares
  • 1 large red pepper, chopped into 1 inch squares
  • Salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F

Heat a large frying pan with the butter and olive oil. Brown the chicken pieces on high heat with skin side down- approximately 3 to 4 minutes on each side. Take the chicken out and add the chopped vegetables and 1 teaspoon salt. Mix well and turn the heat off. Place the chicken pieces on top of the vegetables and roast in oven for 30 to 35 minutes or till chicken is cooked through. Take the chicken pieces out onto a platter and cover to keep warm. Take the vegetables out and chop roughly and keep aside. Take all the liquid out of the frying pan and separate the fat and keep aside. Use the remaining liquid for the chicken before serving- it’s full of yummy flavor!


  • 2 remaining fat from the frying pan
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon harissa
  • 1 ½ cups whole wheat couscous
  • Salt
  • 1 ½ cups chicken broth
  • ½ cup cilantro, chopped
  • ¼ cup fresh mint, chopped

Reheat the same frying pan with the fat and olive oil. Add the chopped vegetables and the harissa. Saute on medium heat for 2 to 3 minutes. Add the broth and a teaspoon of salt. Bring to a boil and add the couscous. Cover with lid and turn heat off and let the pan sit for 10 minutes. Take lid off and fluff couscous with fork. Garnish with cilantro and mint. Serve warm with chicken on top and a drizzle of the chicken liquid!


Chicken with Chorizo on Raisin and Pine Nut Couscous

November 5, 2013

I have to say, this is one of my favorite, recent recipes I have come up with. I am not sure what inspired me- but I am sure I was either reading or watching something or someone cook a dish with chorizo or chicken. As I have mentioned many times before, I love Latin flavors including ancho chili powder. My other favorite ingredient is chorizo. If I could, I would eat chorizo everyday- but the reality is that it is high in fat and calories… so, it is perfect to use as a flavor enhancer and not as the main protein.  I also used chicken thighs but one can use chicken breast and make the dish healthier.

The chicken and chorizo are cooked like a stew in a mixture of chicken broth and orange juice. This fall/winter, I have been using loads of fresh oranges and orange juice. I love the sweet and savory the fruit imparts in all dishes.

I served the stew with a quick raisin and pine nut couscous. I like to use whole wheat couscous to incorporate more whole grains into our diets. I also served a yummy salad .. coming up tomorrow.

  • 2 tablespoons extra light olive oil
  • 1 pound chicken thighs, skinless, bone in
  • ¼ cup all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Pepper
  • 1 cup fresh chorizo, casings off (about 2 to 3 large links) crumbled
  • 1 cup yellow onion, chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • Juice of 2 Clementines
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 2 teaspoons ancho chili powder
  • Salt
  • ½ cup cilantro, chopped

Add the flour, salt and pepper in a wide platter. Dredge the chicken lightly in the flour. Heat a large saucepan with the oil and brown the chicken pieces on both sides for 2 minutes each. Take out and keep aside. Reheat the oil and add the chorizo. Saute on medium high heat for 2 to 3 minutes. Add the onion and garlic and sauté for 3 to 4 minutes. Add the chicken, orange juice, chicken broth and ancho chili powder. Bring to a boil and lower the heat to a simmer. Cover and let cook for 20 minutes. Take the lid off and increase the heat to high. Cook for another 3 to 4 minutes. Check for seasonings and add salt and garnish with cilantro.

Couscous with Raisins and Pine Nuts

  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • ½ cup golden raisins
  • ½ cup pine nuts
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup whole wheat couscous

Heat a medium saucepan with the olive oil. Add the raisins and pine nuts and sauté on medium heat for 1 to 2 minutes. Add the chicken broth and salt. Bring to a boil and add the couscous. Place the lid and turn the heat off. Let stand for fifteen minutes and fluff with a fork. Serve with the chicken.

Couscous with Roasted Cauliflower

August 14, 2012

Couscous with Roasted Cauliflower I made this couscous dish with grilled chicken. I added some roasted cauliflower and tomatoes to the quick cooking starch. I drizzled some olive oil on the cauliflower and tomatoes and I cooked them in oven until the florets were golden brown and the tomatoes soft.

Making the couscous is super simple. I make mine with chicken broth and buy the whole wheat variety from Trader Joes.

The rest was simple, I added the veggies to the cooked couscous. I made extra for the next day… I served the delicious side dish with the fish with romesco sauce. It was a delicious combination…
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Grilled Chicken with Couscous Salad and Vegetables

September 15, 2009

Grilled Chicken with Couscous Salad Grilling days are coming to an end. Although last year I continued to grill outside regardless of the weather. The ingredients change- all the peppers, zucchinis and tomatoes don’t taste as good in the fall and winter.

I felt like making something healthy yet substantial. I had chicken breast in the fridge which I pounded thin and put them away in a marinade.

I love making couscous and always buy the whole wheat one from Trader Joes. I decided to make it a little different this time and sauteed some pancetta- a little goes a long way. I then cooked the grain in chicken broth- both ingredients impart tons of flavor. Once the couscous was cooled I tossed tomatoes, basil, garlic and balsamic vinegar and tossed it like a salad. My plan was to serve it on top of the grilled chicken. 

I used similar ingredients to marinate the vegetables and grilled them till they were golden brown and sweet. It was a delicious meal. It was light, healthy yet quite filling. We enjoyed it with a bottle of Malbec Rose.
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Easy Chicken Recipe: Moroccan Chicken with Apricots

July 30, 2009

moroccan-chicken Sometimes I get into a rut and make the same chicken dishes time and time again. I had chicken thighs in the fridge and I wanted to make a different preparation for a change. Nothing was coming to mind until I was flipping through a William Sonoma catalog. They were featuring a tagine and had a recipe for a chicken cooked in the contraption. I noticed the recipe included olives and apricots- I had both in the fridge- so I started cooking. 

I sprinkled salt and pepper on chicken thighs- my favorite part of the chicken. Thighs are great to use in such dishes- they can be cooked for a long time and not get tough on you, plus they have great flavor. I made a simple spice mix with cinnamon and coated the chicken. I then browned the pieces and sauteed them with garlic and onions. I decided to add some grated carrots- to add some veggies- no one was able to detect anything healthy!

The olives and apricots really gave the chicken an incredible flavor and texture. I love the two ingredients together… The sweetness and chewiness of the apricots complimented the saltiness of the olives really well. I went to a few local stores to find preserved lemons (often used in Moroccan dishes) but was not able to. The olives I had were marinated with lemons- so that is what I used. It worked really well but I am sure using the actual preserved lemons would have been delicous too.

The dish was yum- I made cumin couscous with it. My daughter until recently didn’t care of couscous, but once I told her it is pasta in another form- she was a little more receptive. I made a green salad with our dinner and opened a bottle of red wine. Delicious!

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Garlic Chicken with Pancetta served with Couscous with Pine nuts and Currants

May 13, 2009

garlic-chicken-with-pancettaI was watching food television the other day and saw someone make chicken with 40 cloves of garlic. It looked delicious but it seemed quite labor intensive. I have been meaning to make this dish for a while but have been lazy – so I made it simpler. I decided to use less garlic- it takes too long to peel 40 cloves. I used one head of garlic instead and it was more than enough. I also coated the chicken pieces with seasoned flour before I browned them. I saved a step by doing this- I don’t have to take the chicken out and make a roux separately. I also decided to add pancetta for an extra layer of flavor – boy, what intense flavor bacon gives to a dish! Everything is good with bacon! The fresh thyme is a great addition- it brings a very earthy flavor to the dish. I served the chicken with couscous that I made with pine nuts and currants. I usually add golden raisins to my savory dishes- never used currants before- well I am a fan! They are great tiny little balls of sweetness and go really well in the couscous. My daughter who usually takes the raisins out, somehow didn’t mind the currants in the couscous. I added a little extra chicken broth to the dish so we can enjoy extra sauce with the couscous. 

So, since the dish didn’t have any vegetables, I was planning on serving a salad. I had baby arugula in the fridge and decided to make it simple and add some lemon juice and salt. It suddenly occurred to me maybe I should serve the seasoned arugula on top of the dish! What a brilliant idea- actually it’s not mine- I have seen it many times on food television– they usually add seasoned greens on pizza, pasta, etc. Well it is a great idea- it tasted fantastic!  The lemony arugula was perfect with the creamy chicken and the sweet couscous. It really was a brilliant dish and I think great for company. We drank a Riesling with the chicken- the same one I used to make the sauce. It stood up to the strong flavors of the chicken dish but was light at the same time. It was a very enjoyable meal indeed- nothing better in life than to enjoy great food and wine with the people you love most! 

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