Preserved lemons and wandering off at tangents

I know this blog is predominantly about me and fashion but I love to cook so sometimes I’m going to through in a recipe just to keep things fresh. 🙂

Today for dinner we had this recipe for Moroccan chicken I found on Christies Corner which just happens to be one of my fav sites for recipes and cooking.

If you don’t know me in real life you need to know I never really follow recipes unless it’s a baking recipe and then, only for the first time. So I’ve altered it to suit our tastes, nobody in my family is in the least bit surprised.

To start with there are only 3 of us not 6 – The Cub does have the appetite of an adult right now as we are ‘enjoying’ another growth spurt, aren’t we lucky???? So I’ve used these amounts:

  • 6 skin on boned chicken thighs – it’s all I could get yesterday when faced with the horror that is Morrisons on a Saturday. I’m writing this bit now Sunday morning after starting everything off – ain’t I industrious today? ;~)
  • pepper
  • 1 tbsp olive oil for cooking, don’t use extra virgin as it’s awful for cooking with, keep that for salad dressings – even for 5/6 people in the original recipe I think a 1/4 cup is a LOT!
  • 1 medium onions, thinly sliced – I got to use my mandolin which is always fun
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp cumin – it didn’t say so I used whole because I had them
  • 1/2 tsp coriander – see cumin
  • a pinch dried chili flakes – we aren’t a family who can take a lot of chilli heat
  • 1 cinnamon sticks – I got a bag of these from Morrisons for 99 pence, I miss living near asian wholesale food stores for this kind of thing
  • 2 bay leaves – same amount because I love the taste
  • enough chicken stock to cover – home made no salt
  • 1 whole preserved lemon rinsed and chopped up roughly, make sure all pips are removed
  • 1 fresh lemon juiced retain the lemon after juicing remove any pips left.
  • 100g dried chickpeas soaked overnight because canned chickpeas are stupidly expensive
  • 6 apricots – no olives because there is already enough salt and nobody here likes them. I’ve popped in apricots (which nobody will eat as we only like the flavour not the fruit) to balance the heat, salt and sour tastes
  • 1tbsp dried mint because we don’t have any fresh in
  • 1 lemons, quartered

In a large frying pan brown the chicken (in the olive oil to stop it from catching) and some of the chicken fat has rendered out. I don’t season at this stage because I think it makes the pepper a bit acrid tasting. Remove the chicken to a large casserole dish. Takes about 4/5 minutes in my large Tefal pan.

Add onions and garlic and cook until soft, about 5 minutes. Add turmeric, cumin, coriander, chili flakes, cinnamon sticks and bay leaves and sauté, stirring constantly, until spices are fragrant , about 1 minute. Add some chicken stock, preserved lemon and juice with whats left of the juiced lemon, simmer over low heat for 20 minutes. I tasted it because I was worried about the salt content and added a potato to soak the salt up whilst it was simmering.

Add onions etc to the chicken, add the chickpeas and dried apricots. Stir to combine. Cooked in a fan oven at 160 degree’s until chicken and chickpeas are cooked, took about 1 and a half hours. I would have done this in the slow cooker but mine died earlier this year and I haven’t been able to find a good replacement, if you’d like to recommend one I’ll have a look!

Skim off any oil and stir in the mint and lemon quarters just before serving.

My family don’t like couscous – it reminds us too much of tapioca – so I served it with some rice, carrots and herb bread (from my bread maker) and it was lush. It was still a bit salty even with the potato, so I might soak the preserved lemon for an hour next time to help reduce that. Also, I’d use a green veg to give a bit of colour to the plate.

I forgot to take a picture of it so you’ll just have to take my word, it was good!

I promise the next blog will be about something fashion related!

Mwah! Mwah!



4 thoughts on “Preserved lemons and wandering off at tangents

  1. Laura, I made some it takes 3 weeks, slice the ends off the lemons and you either slice lemons all the way through into 4’s or nearly all the way through leaving the base intact. Pack the cut faces with salt. Put a couple of tablespoons of salt in a sterilised jar pack the lemons in tightly, add some more salt cover with lemon juice. Shake every day for 3 weeks and they are ready to use. They are REALLY lemony and lovely. Oh and the lemon juice goes a bit thick after week 2. Make sure you’re using a jar suitable for pickling as the acid and salt will do major damage to any metal. After week 3 they are ready to use, I use them everywhere that calls for lemon now and when I’ve finished a jar I start another off so I have them when I need them 🙂 I use the kilner type jars from Ikea the .25 ltr ones.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s