Island News

Moroccan adventures

Written By : Sun Fiji Newsroom. Chicken drumsticks make a family meal and this dish, with its mix of vegetables, is a good one for children reluctant to get too
30 Aug 2008 12:00

Written By : Sun Fiji Newsroom. Chicken drumsticks make a family meal and this dish, with its mix of vegetables, is a good one for children reluctant to get too adventurous with their five-a-day. It can be a one-pot dinner or you can add side dishes such as steamed carrots and broccoli or other greens.
Drumsticks are inexpensive and very succulent and silky when braised slowly. This is not a recipe for the more expensive chicken breasts which can dry out and become almost chalky.
I use a Moroccan spice blend called chermoula for this dish. Typically, it contains ground coriander, cumin, paprika, turmeric and cayenne.
It is usually made into a paste with the addition of oil, garlic, lemon juice, fresh parsley and fresh coriander.
The paste is used to marinate fish, in particular. However, dry commercially prepared chermoula spice blends can be sprinkled on chicken or lamb before cooking to give a spicy Moroccan flavour.
If you can’t find chermoula, or don’t want to mix your own, any Moroccan or Mediterranean spice blend or rub can be substituted. – Pat Churchill

Chicken
chermoula (serves four)
l 8 large chicken drumsticks, skins on
l 1 Tbsp chermoula
l 1 leek
l 1 Tbsp cooking oil
l 4 rashers rindless bacon, chopped
l 4 medium potatoes, cubed
l 1 ½ cups chicken stock
l ½ red pepper, cut into chunks
l 2 tomatoes, chopped
l ½ cup pitted olives, green or black
l Fresh coriander
l Lemon juice
Rub the chicken drumsticks with the chermoula and set aside for 30 minutes. Heat oven to 180°.
Wash the leek and cut it off below the dirt line. Cut the bottom end into chunks. Separate the top leaves and wash out any dirt. Pat dry with a paper towel and slice. Prepare the other vegetables.
Heat the oil in a deep overproof casserole dish and brown the drumsticks. Remove and keep warm. Add the bacon to the pan and cook over a medium heat for 4 minutes then add the leeks, red pepper and potatoes and cook a further 7-8 minutes. Add the chicken stock and bring to the boil, deglazing the pan. Return the drumsticks to the pot and add the chopped tomatoes and olives.
Place in the oven, cover and cook for 60-70 minutes until the meat is tender. Thicken the sauce if desired with some flour (about 3 Tbsp) mixed with water to a creamy consistency. Cook a further 5-10 minutes, or until the flour paste is cooked.
Sprinkle with chopped coriander and a squeeze of lemon juice to serve.
Accompany with greens if desired.



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