During this weekend’s Adventures in Housesitting, I gave Kettle Corn what was I hope one of many cooking lessons. It was fun, and set to the crooning of Michael Buble, I chose Chicken Tagine as our first dish. It’s quick, easy, packs a flavorful punch and never ceases to be a fan favorite. Served with some orzo made the mom way, Kettle Corn couldn’t stop raving about it.
Making it Saturday night made me realize how much I just love that dish, and how often it becomes my go-to lazy meal for all those cold fall and winter nights. And I realized that there was no reason to stop the love in the summer, and, as such, I decided to salad-ify it. In doing so, I used all the same components that make it a perfect stew, and turned it into the Moroccan version of a Cobb salad. Plus, SO MANY GREENS from my CSA lately. And, is summer salad season? Tomato and Lettuce scoff at my designation of it as a summer food since they’re anti-categorizing-food-by-season, but I think most would agree. Anyway, only a few weeks left, so let’s summer-food it up.
I thought about throwing it all together, tossed salad-like, but the components were so colorful on their own, I figured Cobb presentation was the way to go. Don’t you agree? So pretty.
To give it a little more heft and protein, I went with quinoa for my starch. Couscous or the aforementioned orzo would also do splendidly.
Now, who said they hate salads??
- 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs
- 1 ½ tsp ground cumin
- 1 ½ tsp smoked paprika, eyeball it
- ½ tsp ground coriander, eyeball it
- ½ tsp tumeric, eyeball it
- ¼ tsp cinnamon, a couple shakes
- 1 can garbanzo beans, rinsed
- 12 prunes, halved
- 1 cup uncooked quinoa
- 2 cups water
- 8 ounces crumbled feta cheese
- 1 cup fresh parsley, chopped
- 1/2 cup fresh mint, ribboned
- 8 cups mixed greens
- pistachios, to garnish
- 2 TB red wine vinegar
- 2 lemons, juiced
- 2 TB, heaping, apricot jam or orange marmalade
- 1 shallot
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp coarse black pepper
- 4 TB olive oil
- In a small saucepan, add the quinoa and water and cook until the liquid is absorbed and the quinoa has cooked. I personally use a rice cooker for this.
- Preheat the broiler or grill.
- In a large bowl, add the chicken, paprika, cumin, coriander, cinnamon and turmeric. Toss to thoroughly coat. Place the thighs, single layer, on a broiling pan lined with foil. Broil or grill the thighs, about 7 minutes the first side, 4 the second, until cooked through. Set aside to let the juices redistribute, about 10 minutes. Chop chicken into strips.
- Make the dressing by tossing all the ingredients into a blender. Puree until smooth.
- In a large bowl, mix together the greens, parsley and mint. Toss in the quinoa.
- Divide the lettuce between four plates or bowls. Arrange the chicken, garbanzos, prunes, feta in a pleasing arrangement atop the salad. Sprinkle with some pistachios for crunch and drizzle the desired amount of dressing on top. Serve immediately.
Pack your culinary bags and keep up with the deliciousness! Follow me on: