Chicken Tagine with Olives and Preserved Lemons

Course : Chicken
Serves: 6
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Ingredients:

1/4 cup olive oil
3 pounds chickens -- each cut in 6 pieces
1/2 Teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
2 small onions -- finely chopped
1/4 Teaspoon ground ginger
1 piece cinnamon - 3 inch
1/4 Teaspoon saffron threads -- crumbled
2 medium tomatoes, peeled -- seeded and chopped
6 cloves garlic -- finely chopped
1 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley -- finely chopped
1 cup fresh cilantro -- finely chopped
3 medium preserved lemons
1/2 pound mediterranean brine-cured olives -- calamata/picholine
 

Preparation / Directions:

Heat the oil in a large enameled cast-iron casserole. Season the chicken pieces with the salt and pepper and add them to the casserole along with the onion, ginger, cinnamon, and saffron. Cook over high heat, turning the chicken occasionally, until browned all over, about 10 min. Add the tomatoes, garlic, parsley, cilantro and 2 c. of water and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low, cover and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the chicken is tender, about 1 hour. (The recipe can be prepared up to this point up to 2 days ahead; cover and refrigerate. Rewarm before continuing.) Meanwhile, rinse the preserved lemons under running water; pat dry. Separate the lemons into quarters. Discard the pulp from one of the lemons and finely chop the peel. Reserve the quarters for garnish. Transfer the chicken to a large plate. Strain the cooking liquid and return it to the casserole. Boil over high heat until slightly thickened, about 10 min. Add the chopped preserved lemon and the olives and simmer over moderate heat for 2 min. Add the chicken pieces and simmer until heated through. Arrange the chicken pieces in a serving dish. Pour the sauce on top and garnish with the lemon quarters.


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