MOROCCAN CHICKEN TAGINE WITH KUMQUATS AND PRUNES (for four)
2 tablespoons olive oil
one 4 pound chicken, cut into 8 pieces
2 onions, chopped
one 1 pound butternut squash, peeled, seeded, cut into ¾ inch pieces
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon ground cumin
¼ teaspoon saffron threads
2 cups chicken stock or canned low-salt broth
4 ounces kumquats, quartered lengthwise, seeded
4 ounces pitted prunes
2 tablespoons honey
chopped fresh cilantro
1. Heat olive oil in a large tagine, heavy lidded skillet or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Sprinkle chicken with salt and pepper, add to the skillet and brown, turning once, about 10 minutes per batch. Transfer chicken to plate.
2. Pour off all but a thin film of fat from the skillet. Add the onions, reduce the heat to medium and sauté until very tender and beginning to brown, about 10 minutes. Add squash and stir 2 minutes. Add cinnamon, cumin and saffron and stir until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add chicken stock and bring to a boil, scraping up browned bits. Add chicken with any drippings on plate, kumquats, pitted prunes and honey.
3. Cover tagine and simmer until chicken is cooked through, turning occasionally, 20 to 25 minutes. Uncover and boil until liquid thickens to sauce consistency if necessary. Season to taste with salt and pepper. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and chill. Rewarm covered over medium heat).
4. Mound couscous on plates. Spoon chicken and sauce over. Sprinkle with cilantro and serve.
adapted from Bon Appetit Magazine, November, 1992