Moroccan-Inspired Roasted Spiced Chicken


5 tbsp salted butter
4 medium garlic cloves, minced
2 tbsp cumin seeds, lightly crushed
1 smoked paprika
1/4 to 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
Kosher salt and ground black pepper
2 tbsp finely chopped fresh cilantro, plus whole leaves to serve
2 tbsp finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley, plus whole leaves to serve
2 tsp packed light brown sugar
1 tsp lemon juice, plus lemon wedges, to serve
3 pounds bone-in, skin-on chicken leg quarters, patted dry


  1. Heat the oven to 230°C (450°F) with a rack in the middle position. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil and set a wire rack on top.
  2. In a small saucepan over medium, melt the butter. Add the garlic and cumin, then cook, swirling the pan, until the seeds sizzle, 60 to 90 seconds.
  3. Stir in the paprika, cayenne and 1 tsp black pepper. Cook until the spices are fragrant, 30 to 60 seconds.
  4. Remove from heat and whisk in the cilantro, parsley, sugar and lemon juice. Set aside.
  5. Using a sharp knife, cut parallel slashes on each chicken leg about 1 inch apart all the way to the bone on both sides of each leg. Season all over with salt, then brush both sides with about half of the butter mixture.
  6. Place the chicken skin up on the prepared rack and roast for 10 minutes.
  7. Brush the remaining butter mixture onto the surface of the chicken. Continue to roast until well browned and the thickest part of the thigh reaches 80°C (175°F), about another 15 minutes.
  8. Transfer the chicken to a serving platter and let rest for 10 minutes.
  9. Sprinkle with cilantro and parsley leaves, then serve with lemon wedges on the side.

Makes 6 servings.

Source: The Winnipeg Free Press

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Rogan Josh


700 g boneless leg of lamb, trimmed and cut into 5-cm cubes
2 tomatoes, seeded and chopped
1 onion, chopped
2 tbsp ghee or vegetable or peanut oil
1-1/2 tbsp Garlic and Ginger Paste
2 tbsp tomato paste
2 bay leaves
1 tbsp ground coriander
1/4-1 tsp chili powder, ideally Kashmiri chili powder
1/2 tsp ground turmeric
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp garam masala
fresh bay leaves, to garnish (optional)


1-1/2 cups plain yogurt
1/2 tsp ground asafetida, dissolved in 2 tbsp water


  1. Make the marinade, put the yogurt in a large bowl and stir in the asafetida. Add the lamb and use your hands to rub in all the marinade, then cover and let marinate in a cool place for 30 minutes.
  2. Put the tomatoes and onion in a food processor or blender and whiz until blended.
  3. Melt the ghee in a flameproof casserole or large skillet with a tight-fitting lid. Add the Garlic and Ginger Paste and stir-fry until you can smell cooked garlic.
  4. Stir in the tomato mixture, tomato paste, bay leaves, coriander, chili powder, and turmeric. Reduce the heat to low and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 5-8 minutes.
  5. Add the lamb with any leftover marinade and the salt and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Cover, reduce the heat to low, and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 30 minutes. The lamb should give off enough moisture to prevent it catching on the bottom of the pan, but if the sauce looks too dry, stir in a little water.
  6. Sprinkle the lamb with the garam masala, re-cover the pan, and continue simmering for an additional 15-20 minutes, or until the lamb is tender. Adjust the seasoning, if necessary.
  7. Garnish the curry with bay leaves, if liked, and serve.

Makes 4 to 6 servings.

Source: Curries

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Trout with Mushrooms and Potato-Parsnip Mash


4 medium potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks
4 medium parsnips, peeled and cut into chunks
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
2 fresh whole trout (about 12 ounces each), filleted
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter, divided
12 ounces cremini mushrooms, sliced
1/4 cup dry white or rose wine
1 tablespoon minced fresh sage


  1. Place potatoes and parsnips in large saucepan; add cold water to cover. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to medium-low; simmer until vegetables are fork-tender.
  2. Combine flour, thyme, salt and pepper in shallow dish. Coat trout fillets with flour mixture, shaking off excess.
  3. Heat 2 tablespoons butter in large skillet over medium-high heat. Add fish to skillet in single layer; cook 1 to 2 minutes per side until fish just begins to flake when tested with fork. Remove from skillet and keep warm.
  4. Add mushrooms to skillet; cook and stir 3 minutes, adding additional butter if needed to prevent scorching. Season with salt and pepper.
  5. Add wine; cook and stir until most of liquid has evaporated.
  6. Drain potatoes and parsnips; return to saucepan and mash. Stir in remaining 2 tablespoons butter and sage; season with salt and pepper. Serve trout over mashed vegetables and top with mushrooms.

Makes 4 servings.

Source: Irish Cooking Bible

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Chocolate and Cinnamon Wontons


16 wonton wrappers
40 g butter, melted
16 small squares (120 g) dark chocolate
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 tablespoons caster (superfine) sugar


  1. Preheat oven to 180°C (350°F).
  2. Brush the edges of the wonton wrappers with a little butter and place a chocolate square on one half of each wrapper. Fold over the wrappers to enclose and press to seal. Place on a baking tray lined with non-stick baking paper.
  3. Brush wontons with butter and sprinkle with combined cinnamon and sugar. Bake for 8 minutes or until golden. Serve warm.

Makes 4 servings.

Source: Donna Hay

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Ramadan Inspires a Moroccan-spiced Lamb-chickpea Soup

Christopher Kimball wrote . . . . . . . . .

After sunset during Ramadan, the daily fast customarily ends by eating dates. Then the Iftar meal begins with some kind of soup, satisfying hunger and quenching thirst at the same time.

Among the soups served, one of the most common in northern Africa is chorba frik, a meaty chickpea soup richly spiced with cumin, coriander, cinnamon, ginger and more. It inspired this recipe from our book “Tuesday Nights Mediterranean,” which features weeknight-friendly meals from the region.

Chorba frik typically simmers chunks of beef or lamb with chickpeas and freekeh, a type of green wheat that has been roasted and cracked. For our simple weeknight version, we use canned chickpeas, coarse bulgur, which is easier to source than freekeh, and quick-cooking ground lamb that has been formed into small meatballs.

We season the lamb with ras el hanout, an aromatic Moroccan blend that typically includes at least seven spices. Look for it in well-stocked supermarkets, spice shops or Middle Eastern grocery stores.

Normally, we prefer the richer flavor of concentrated tomato paste, the type often packaged in tubes. But in this recipe its potent flavor would overwhelm the other ingredients. While the bulgur and meatballs simmer, don’t forget to stir occasionally to prevent them from sticking to the bottom of the pot.

This savory soup is a meal in itself, but warm, crusty bread is a perfect paring.

North African Lamb, Chickpea and Bulgur Soup

Start to finish: 45 minutes

Servings: 4

1 tablespoon ras el hanout
4 teaspoons dried mint
Kosher salt and ground black pepper
12 ounces ground lamb
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 bunch scallions, thinly sliced, whites and greens reserved separately
1 celery stalk, including leaves if present, finely chopped
6 medium garlic cloves, chopped
1/4 cup tomato paste
15-1/2-ounce can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
3/4 cup coarse bulgur
2 medium ripe tomatoes, cored and chopped

In a medium bowl, stir together the ras el hanout, mint, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Add the lamb and 3 tablespoons water, then mix with your hands until well combined; set aside.

In a large pot over medium-high, heat the oil until shimmering. Add the scallion whites, the celery, garlic and ½ teaspoon salt. Cook, stirring often, until the vegetables have softened, about 2 minutes. Add the tomato paste and cook, stirring, until the paste is well browned, about 3 minutes. Add the chickpeas and cook, stirring occasionally, until the chickpeas are completely coated with tomato paste, 2 to 3 minutes.

Add 6 cups water, scraping up any browned bits. Cover the pot and bring to a boil over high, then stir in the bulgur. Using your fingers, break off grape-sized chunks of the lamb mixture, dropping them into the pot as you go. Stir, cover and bring to a simmer. Reduce to medium and simmer, covered and stirring occasionally, until the bulgur is tender and the meatballs are no longer pink at the center, about 12 minutes. Off heat, stir in the scallion greens and the tomatoes. Taste and season with salt and pepper.

Source: AP