Chicken Thigh Tajine with Buttercup Squash, Dates and Almonds

Happy Last day of 2012 everyone! Boy has it been a full-on year. There’s been many highs and lows – the lows of stressful projects and family illness and the highs of becoming a Mrs. and succeeding at many of those stressful projects. I’ve learned a lot about cooking this year – mostly that I can create anything in the kitchen that I set my mind to. It’s been a fun ride. I’m excited to see what 2013 holds for the kitchen as well.

Last night I decided it was high time that I broke out the Tajine I got as a wedding gift. My Aunt and Uncle recently returned from Morocco and were raving about how amazing the food was there, and that I HAD to cook with this magical tool! So, here is my first Tajine attempt. It was marvelous.

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Here’s the Tajine. It’s basically a heavy bottom clay pot with a funky lid. The lid allows for all the steam to be re-conducted back towards the food, never letting the moisture to escape. Genius, I tell you!

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For this recipe, I used the last of the buttercup squashes from the garden harvest. I swear, they only get more delicious over time!

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The most labour intensive part of this recipe was to peel and dice the squash. the rest was easy peasy.

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First, dice up some onions and garlic and cook down with some butter and olive oil and spices in the Tajine base.

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Next, brown the chicken thighs with the onions and garlic.

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While you’re waiting, pit and cut up your dates.

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Here are the chicken thighs, all nicely browned.

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Throw all your other ingredients into the Tajine,

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Making sure to coat everything nicely,

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And pop the whole thing in the oven.

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After about a half hour at 375, you have a perfectly cooked and intensely flavourful meal.

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Serve with a little bit a of Quinoa, and enjoy, a LOT! (I had dreams about this last night, it was so good!)

Jacquie’s Awesome Chicken Thigh Tajine with Buttercup Squash, Dates and Almonds

You will need:

1 tbsp butter

2 tsp olive oil

1tbsp cumin

1 tbsp cinnamon

1tbsp curry powder

1 onion

3 cloves of garlic, minced

3-4 chicken thighs

1 medium buttercup squash

10 dates, pitted and diced

1/2 cup almonds

1/2 water

Begin by peeling and cubing your squash, set aside. Preheat oven to 375. Next, dice onions and mince garlic. Heat butter and oil in the Tajine base and add onions and garlic. Add spices and cook down. Add chicken thighs to brown. Once the chicken is browned, add all other ingredients, making sure to coat everything evenly in the oil and spices. Add water and cover Tajine with lid.  Bake at 375 for about 30-40 minutes, until squash are cooked, but still holding their shape. Serve with a side of quinoa or couscous.

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2 Comments on “Chicken Thigh Tajine with Buttercup Squash, Dates and Almonds”

  1. Hey, Jacquie – yummy sounding tagine! So glad you broke in your tagine – and how easy it is, you’ll probably use it even more often! Next time you’re making it, try our Ras el Hanout, an authentic Moroccan spice blind that tastes great in tagine and other simmering stews. Kofta would also be good, a 7-spice blend from the Middle East. Happy cooking!


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