Moroccan Spiced Chicken Tagine with Artichoke, Fennel and Peas. Also known as Sunshine On A Plate!
It feels good to be getting back to a savoury recipe, after all the sweet recipes I’ve shared lately and what can be better than an easy one-pot meal? This space is full of them!
Now, I’m no stranger to the three/four vegetable combination of artichoke, fennel, peas and carrot. It’s both sweet and savoury with a nice hint of liquorice. When I say hint I really mean it. For those of you that don’t like strong anise-flavoured raw Fennel in salad , cook this Tagine and I dare you not to like it.
Ever heard ‘variety is the spice of life’ ? I definitely feel that way about food. OK I’m not that adventurous when it comes to offal and seafood but apart from those things, I’m open to trying anything حلالا halal.
Recently, I was looking up the UK’s seasonal fruits and vegetables and guess what? Fennel is one of winters seasonal veg.
So, this is a winning chicken dinner with at least one seasonal veg, but wait until summer and not only Fennel, fresh Peas and Carrots are in season too! Burst my bubble then didn’t I? Ha! Really I just cook food I want to EAT and it’s a bonus if the ingredients are in season.
As the supermarket price for fresh globe artichokes is around £2 each, I opted for a tin of artichoke hearts instead. Not only do they work out cheaper, but it also saves on preparation time. Artichokes are a pain to prep.
Peas & Carrots bring natural sweetness to the dish, as they do in many other Tagines such as Algerian Jelbana.
The spicing of this Chicken Tagine is very much Moroccan. Turmeric ‘poor man’s saffron’, Ginger and a pinch of Ras el hanout. All bring colour and gentle heat to compliment the Chicken and Vegetables.
Chicken works well with all the afore-mentioned ingredients, but if you wanted to use lamb, mutton or beef who am I to stop you? Bear in mind you will need to cook a meat Tagine longer – until the meat is tender. Therefore, you will want to add in extra water as and when needed to prevent the liquid from drying out and the stew from burning.
Tagines or North African Stews are named after the conical clay vessel they are most often cooked in, but if like me you don’t / no longer have one, you can use a regular cooking pot and get similar pleasing results.
If you like North African food, stay updated via subscription and/or social media, as I have a classic Algerian Chicken Soup recipe coming soon إن شاء الله
- 3 tablespoons oil (for me, olive oil)
- 1 large onion, grated or finely chopped
- 2 garlic, sliced
- ½ teaspoon fine sea salt (or to taste)
- 500-750 grams halal on the bone chicken pieces
- 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
- 1 teaspoon ground ginger
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
- pinch of ras el hanout *optional
- 1-2 large carrots, cut into medium rounds or thin length slices
- 1 large fennel, trimmed and cut into quarters
- 250 grams frozen green peas
- 400g tin of artichoke hearts, drained and rinsed
- 500ml* water
- fresh coriander leaves, chopped
- squeeze of lemon juice
- In a Tagine or medium-large cooking pot over medium heat, warm oil, Add chicken pieces and brown on all sides,this should take about 10 minutes. Remove chicken and set aside.
- Reduce heat, add onion and saute for 5 minutes or until soft and translucent. Add garlic and salt, saute for 1-2 minutes more.
- Return chicken to the pot along with spices, toss and saute for 1-2 minutes before adding carrots, fennel and peas followed by water. Increase heat and bring up to to a steady simmer, cover and reduce heat. Cook for 45 minutes to 1 hour or until chicken is cooked through, the vegetables are tender and the sauce has significantly reduced. Add the artichoke hearts in the last 10-15 minutes of cooking. Serve warm, sprinkled with coriander and a squeeze of lemon juice, alongside bread or couscous.
*You may need more water depending on the size of your cooking pot and if you choose to cook meat you will also need to add more water as and when needed and cook the Tagine for longer, until the meat is tender.