Our good friend, Sarah, just recently gave birth to a beautiful baby boy, her second child. Having two kids under two is quite an adjustment so I put together a welcome home bag to last them a couple meals and added an easy dinner they could use in the future. I baked a batch of scones and added a jar of sour cherry jam for breakfast, made some peanut butter dark chocolate oatmeal cookies (good for lactation!) and included a package of dried fresh pasta and a jar of roasted tomato puree for a future meal.
For dinner that evening, I added some rice and a delicious Moroccan Chicken Stew. I slightly adapted the recipe from America’s Test Kitchen’s “Slow Cooker Revolution”, which is the bible of really great slow cooker recipes, as far as I am concerned. This makes a LOT, at least 8 portions, which is great for sharing with others while still having a meal for your family that evening (and lunch the next day!). Alternately, this would freeze well too. My friend and her husband were so appreciative of their bag of goodies and I’m glad they could focus on their family and not worry about planning dinner and breakfast for a day or two.
Moroccan Chicken Stew
- 2 onions, diced
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 1 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 4 cups low sodium chicken broth
- 3/4 cup or 187 ml white wine
- 2 15-ounce cans chick peas, drained and rinsed
- 1 cup dried apricots, chopped and divided
- 3 tablespoons tapioca
- 4 bay leaves
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 3 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs
- Salt and pepper
- 2 teaspoons chopped cilantro
- 3 tablespoons light brown sugar
Add onions, garlic, tomato paste, oil, paprika and coriander to a bowl and microwave for 5 minutes, until the onions are softened. Transfer to the slow cooker.
Add broth, wine, chickpeas, half the apricots, tapioca, bay leaves and cinnamon stick to the slow cooker. Season chicken with salt and pepper on both sides and nestle the thighs in to the slow cooker. Cook on low for 4-6 hours, until the chicken is cooked through and tender.
Move the chicken pieces to a cutting board and shred the chicken with two forks.
Meanwhile, remove the bay leaves and cinnamon stick and add the remaining 1/2 cup chopped apricots, cilantro and brown sugar and cook on high for 5-10 minutes. Add the chicken back in and cook for an additional 5 minutes. Serve hot over rice.