Recipe: Megan Coupland of Red Kitchen | Photography: Brydie Thompson
I’m all about healthy, fun and easy midweek family meals and tagines hit the brief. They are our one pot go to and have a bit of wow factor, you spend very little time preparing them and the results look like you have been in the kitchen for hours. A ceramic tagine is a beautiful and very natural way to cook, easy to clean and creates a bit of theatre. You can use a shallow casserole dish, but the cooking times may be different.
I use an Emile Henry tagine, as these are ceramic and so robust. They work well on the stovetop, gas and BBQ.
You do not need to brown the chicken for this, just trim all the excess skin and fat from the bird. Chicken cooks and tenderises very quickly in the tagine, so keep an eye on it as it is very easy to overcook which results in an unpleasant texture.
If you need to make this a bit more family friendly you can take out the olives and prunes and add cubed potato and carrot. Cut them in about 2cm dice so they cook at the same rate as the chicken.
2 onions, peeled and finely sliced
1.4kg free-range chicken, cut into 8 portions
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp cinnamon
1 cup pitted prunes
1 cup green olives
¼ cup verjuice
1½ cups chicken stock
salt and freshly ground black pepper
½ cup blanched almonds, toasted
¼ cup chopped fresh parsley
Place onions in the base of a large tagine. Arrange chicken portions on top, drizzle with olive oil and dust with spices. Scatter prunes and olives around the chicken. Pour verjuice and stock over chicken until three-quarters covered and season with salt and pepper.
Cover tagine with lid and place over heat. Bring liquid to a very gentle simmer for approx 45 minutes until and chicken is cooked. You only need a very small flame or element to get this simmering.
Skim any excess fat from surface of sauce. Check and adjust seasoning, if necessary. Scatter with almonds and parsley and serve.
Serve with French or Israeli couscous.