DJAJ M’AMMAR BIL KESKSOU (Moroccan roasted chicken with cinnamon honey glaze and couscous, for four)


a 3-1/2 pound chicken

For the marinade:

1-1/2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

juice of ½ lemon

½ teaspoon ground ginger

½ teaspoon ground cinnamon

salt and black pepper to taste

For the honey butter glaze:

¼ cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, melted

¼ cup honey

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

¼ teaspoon turmeric

1. Position a rack in the middle of the oven and preheat oven to 450*.

2. Mix the marinade ingredients together in a small bowl. Remove the giblets and discard or reserve them for another use, rinse the bird inside and out under cold running water and pat it dry with paper towels. Remove any excess fat from the bird, tuck the flap of skin at the neck end under and fold the wings akimbo. Using a pastry brush, paint the chicken on all sides with the marinade, pouring any excess into the cavity of the bird. Cross the legs and tie with kitchen twine, looping around the “bishop’s nose”, to close the cavity.

3. Put chicken breast side up on a rack in a roasting pan. Roast for about 30 minutes, then reduce the oven temperature to 400* and continue roasting for another 30 minutes (see note below). While the chicken roasts, mix together the honey butter glaze in a small bowl.

4. Remove the chicken from the oven after 60 minutes of roasting and paint with the honey butter glaze. Return chicken to the oven to roast for a final 20 minutes. Check carefully to see that the honey doesn’t burn, and reserve the remaining honey butter.

5. After 20 minutes, remove the chicken from the oven. Give the bird a final coating of honey butter and let it sit 10 minutes before carving. Carve the chicken and serve with any remaining honey butter and the couscous.

adapted from Claudia Roden, Arabesque

NOTE: Cooking time must increase if your bird is larger than 3-1/2 pounds. Calculate between 20 and 25 minutes (depending on the heat of your oven) total cooking time for each pound, or until a meat thermometer registers 170* in the thickest part of the breast (do not touch the bone) and 185* in the thigh meat.

SERVE WITH: Couscous with apricots, currants and pistachios

DJAJ M’AMMAR BIL KESKSOU REDUX: Moroccan chicken soup with chickpeas and vermicelli

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