Moroccan Chicken Tagine

A traditionally shaped tagine looks like an upside down cone on top of a casserole dish. But a chicken fryer holds the same amount, and slowly bastes the food as it cooks.


6 garlic cloves, minced and divided

1½ teaspoons sweet paprika

½ teaspoon cumin

½ teaspoon coriander

½ teaspoon cinnamon

¼ teaspoon ground ginger

1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper

1 teaspoon minced lemon zest

4 pounds chicken thighs

Salt to taste

Pepper to taste

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 large onion cut into ¼" wedges

2 large carrots, peeled and cut into ½" rounds

2 cups chicken broth

1 tablespoon honey

1 cup pitted green olives

3 tablespoons chopped cilantro

Juice from 2 lemons

  • Combine half of the garlic with the spices and set aside. Combine the other half of the garlic with half of the lemon zest and set aside. Pat the chicken dry and season with salt and pepper.

  • Place the pan over medium-high heat. Add the oil and chicken. Brown on each side for 6 minutes. Cook the chicken in batches if necessary to prevent the chicken from touching. Remove the chicken and set aside.

  • Pour off all but 1 tablespoon of the fat and add the onion and lemon zest. Reduce the heat to medium and cook while stirring occasionally for 5–7 minutes. Add the garlic and spices and cook for 1 minute, stirring continually. Stir in the carrots, broth, and honey and scrape the bottom of the pan. Return the chicken to the pan, keeping everything on a single layer. Cover, reduce the heat to medium-low, and simmer 1 hour.

  • Transfer the chicken to a serving platter and tent with foil. Skim off the fat from the sauce, add the olives, and increase the heat to medium. Boil for 5–7 minutes. The sauce should thicken slightly, the carrots should be tender, and the olives warm. Stir in the garlic and lemon mixture, the cilantro, the lemon juice, and return the chicken to the pan, coating it in sauce. Serve with couscous or rice.

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