The Moroccan culture has always intrigued me. From the colorful fabrics, unique accessories and of course, spice laden food. Though I haven't been in an authentic Moroccan restaurant here in NJ yet (any suggestions?), I have spent hours researching about the country's refined cuisine.
After going through numerous recipes, I was surprised to find out that most of the ingredients used in Moroccan cooking are already in my pantry. Okay, I confess I have a long time obsession with herbs, spices, flours and even vinegars. In fact, my kids has already nicknamed my kitchen, The Lab. Do you get the picture?
Anyway, after gathering some confidence, I finally decided to experiment with the spices I have on hand. Since lamb is quite on the pricey side and I'm not sure if my family will be open to the new flavor profile just I created, I sneaked my concoction in our weekly roasted chicken dish. Chicken the kids' favorite so what else can go wrong right?
The result amazed not only me but the whole family. Our usual roasted chicken turned out to be very moist and packed with flavor. My Moroccan inspired Roasted Chicken became an instant hit! Even Child #3 who's the pickiest of all, even called it his favorite chicken ever.
If you like to make soups out of leftovers, I'm giving you a warning. If you serve this to your family and guests, you will not have enough left!
Intrigued? Give this a try. Then let me know what happens.
Have a great week my friends!
1 whole chicken cut into serving pieces
1 whole bulb of garlic
Moroccan Spice Mix
1 Tbs. ground coriander
2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 tsp. cumin
2 tsp. ginger powder
2 tsp. fennel powder
1 tsp. ground cloves
1 1/2 Tbs. sea salt
1/4 tsp. ground cayenne pepper (You can add more if you like it hot)
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
2. In a small bowl combine the Moroccan spice mix. Set aside.
3. Line a 9 x 13 baking dish with aluminum foil. This makes clean up really easy.
4. Cut the garlic bulb in half horizontally. Do not remove the skin because it will keep the individual cloves together.
5. Generously rub the chicken pieces with the spice mix.
6. Arrange the chicken pieces and garlic in the prepared baking dish.
7. Bake in the oven for 1 hour and 20 minutes or until the internal temperature of the chicken pieces reach 180 degrees.
8. Once cooked through, remove the baking dish from the oven. With a fork, carefully, pick the roasted garlic pieces and mash it in a small bowl.
9. Top the chicken pieces with the mashed garlic and let it rest for at least 10 minutes before serving.
10. Serve hot or warm with steamed rice and mixed vegetables.