Pic of Moroccan chicken with mint, chilli and pomegranate

Moroccan chicken with mint, chilli and pomegranate

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Meat mains

Moroccan chicken with mint, chilli and pomegranate

Main Serves 2 30 min
This is a fragrant and mildly spicy Moroccan-style stew, full of nourishment from the vegetables, chicken stock and herbs. It sounds odd, but carrots match really well with Middle Eastern spices. Perhaps there is a reason, as they are supposed to have originated in Afghanistan, in their native purple form.

Cook's notes

A pomegranate adds a final flourish of jewel-like seeds. If you don't use all of the seeds for this dish, they make a great snack, or use to sprinkle over lunchbox salads.

Ingredients

  • 1 onion
  • 300g carrots
  • oil for frying, e,g, sunflower or light olive
  • 250g cherry tomatoes
  • 1 chilli
  • 15g parsley
  • 1 tbsp tomato purée
  • 300g diced chicken breast
  • 100g couscous
  • 1 chicken stock pack
  • 1 tsp dried mint
  • ½ tsp ground cumin
  • ½ tsp paprika
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 pomegranate
  • 1 lemon
  • salt and pepper

Method

Prep time: 5 min
Cooking time: 25 min
  • Step 1

    Peel and finely dice the onion. Wash, peel and finely dice the carrots (1½- 2cm max, so they cook in time). Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a heavy-based saucepan. Add the onion and carrots. Fry on a low heat for 10 minutes, stirring now and then to stop them catching.
  • Step 2

    Add a splash of water if they look like they might. Meanwhile, cut the tomatoes in half crossways. Cut the chilli in half lengthways, remove the seeds, then finely chop it. You can decide to use all of it or just half if you prefer less heat.
  • Step 3

    Wash half the pack of parsley (save the rest for other meals). After 10 minutes, add the tomato purée and diced chicken to the onion and carrot. Stir for 1 minute. Add the cherry tomatoes, chilli, couscous, chicken stock pack, dried mint, cumin, paprika, cinnamon stick and 200ml water.
  • Step 4

    Season with a little salt and pepper. Bring up to a low boil and cook for 12-15 minutes, just until the chicken is cooked through (no pink juices should remain, test by cutting one open). Meanwhile, finely chop the parsley. Cut the pomegranate in half crossways.
  • Step 5

    Take a rolling pin or wooden spoon, hold the pomegranate over a bowl, seed side down, and bash the skin so the seeds fall out. Pick out any yellow membrane, which tastes bitter. Once the chicken is cooked through, squeeze in the juice from quarter of the lemon.
  • Step 6

    Check the seasoning and add more lemon juice, salt and pepper to taste. Ladle into 2 bowls. Sprinkle over the parsley and some of the pomegranate seeds to serve (remove the cinnamon stick before eating!).

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