Moroccan Chermoula Chicken

A few weekends ago, I invited my girlfriends over so they could witness me in all my culinary goddess-ness. The pressure was on. One hates beef, the other can't stand spicy meat and nobody fancied a curry. I thought that this would be the perfect opportunity to try out a recipe I'd been thinking of for a while. Chermoula is a spicy, North African sauce that is used to marinate meat and fish dishes. I coated chicken breasts with this and left it in the oven to slow roast in it's stew for a good hour and what resulted was the most tender chicken breasts you could ever imagine! If you would like to leave your guests bowled over by your kitchen finesse, let me tell you how... 

Serving: 10 portions
Prep+cooking time: 3 hrs

Ingredients for chicken

  • 8-10 chicken breasts
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 white onions, finely sliced
  • 1 can diced tomatoes in sauce
  • 1/2 cup chicken stock, already dissolving in hot water
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • a small handful of coriander

Ingredients for chermoula

  • 1/4 cup chopped coriander
  • 1 green chilli, finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp harissa (a popular North African chilli paste, available in large supermarkets)
  • 3 garlic cloves, crushed and finely chopped
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • 1 tbsp red pepper paste

Instructions

1) Pre-heat the oven to 180°c/350F/gas mark 4.
2)Blend the chermoula ingredients, coat the chicken breasts and leave to marinate for at least 2 hours.
3) Heat oil in a frying pan and cook on each side for 2-3 minutes to seal the chicken and add some smoky flavour. Remove the chicken and place it in a tagine or deep, ovenproof dish.
4) Pour the chicken stock into the ovenproof dish, along with the rest of the ingredients.
5) Allow the dish to slow roast in the oven for 1 hour and keep turning the chicken so that both sides are equally moist and tender.
6) Serve hot with bulgar wheat or couscous.