Moroccan Chicken Casserole

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Preparation info

  • Difficulty

    Medium

  • Serves

    4

Appears in

The Quinoa Cookbook

The Quinoa Cookbook

By Penny Doyle

Published 2013

  • About

This tagine-style casserole of spiced meat and vegetables is packed with North African flavours. It is marvellous as a delicious one-pot meal for many hungry mouths, and is nutritionally well balanced since it contains three protein sources (chicken, chickpeas and quinoa), as well as carbohydrate and a generous amount of vegetables.

Ingredients

  • 30 ml/2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 450 g/1 lb chicken thighs, skinned
  • 6 shallots, peeled and cut in half
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 2.5 cm/1 in piece of fresh root ginger, grated
  • 5 ml/1 tsp ground ginger
  • 7.5 ml/ tsp smoked paprika
  • 7.5 ml/ tsp ground cumin
  • 225 g/8 oz butternut squash, peeled and cut into 2 cm/¾ in cubes
  • 300 g/12 oz/2 cups pearl quinoa
  • 115 g/4 oz/scant 1 cup cooked chickpeas
  • 200 g/7 oz canned cherry tomatoes
  • 50 g/2 oz/½ cup black olives, pitted
  • 1 preserved lemon, finely chopped
  • 25 g/1 oz/¼ cup raisins
  • 30 ml/2 tbsp tomato purée (paste)
  • 1.2 litres/2 pints/5 cups chicken stock
  • salt and ground black pepper
  • a handful of roughly torn fresh coriander (cilantro), to garnish
  • chunks of fresh bread, to serve

Method

  1. Heat the oven to 180°C/350°F/Gas 4. Heat 15 ml/1 tbsp of the vegetable oil in a large frying pan and add the chicken thighs, sealing them over a high heat for a few minutes until lightly browned all over. Transfer to a large lidded casserole.
  2. Add a further 15 ml/1 tbsp oil to the frying pan and add the shallots, garlic, fresh and ground ginger, paprika, cumin and butternut squash. Fry for around 5-6 minutes to release the flavours and soften the vegetables.
  3. Add the quinoa, chickpeas, tomatoes, olives, lemon and raisins and stir to heat through and coat the quinoa. Transfer the mixture to the casserole, then place over medium heat.
  4. Add the tomato purée, stock and seasoning to the casserole and bring to a simmer, then cover and cook in the oven for 50-60 minutes, until the squash is tender and most of the juices have been absorbed by the quinoa. Remove the casserole from the oven and stir in the fresh coriander.
  5. Serve in warmed bowls with chunks of fresh bread. Don’t leave this to stand for too long, as the quinoa will continue to absorb the cooking liquid.

Variation

Stir 15 ml/1 tbsp clear honey into the mixture just before serving for a less spicy, sweeter dish.

Nutritional Information: Energy 678kcal/2846kJ; Protein 36g; Carbohydrate 72g, of which sugars 16g; Fat 30g, of which saturates 6g; Cholesterol 123mg; Calcium 162mg; Fibre 7g; Sodium 739mg.