Friday, October 4, 2013

Slow Cooker Chicken Tagine

I haven't pulled out my slow cooker much this fall, so today it made an appearance to make this great dinner! I had chicken tagine a few years ago in a Moroccan restaurant and wanted to try to duplicate it. This came pretty close, but I think having the pickled lemons would have made a big difference. I couldn't find them in my grocery store, but would really like to try to make it again when I find them.  It still tasted really good with just using fresh lemon zest and juice instead, and it was very good with the cous cous that I made to go along with it. I made a healthier version of this meal by using boneless, skinless chicken breasts instead of whole chicken pieces with the skin on. 

Since this meal didn't need as long as a lot of other meals do in the slow cooker, I popped everything in the crock pot around noon, and it was ready to go 5 1/2 hours later at dinner time. When I made the couscous at dinner time,I used organic chicken stock and a little olive oil. It gives it a lot more flavor than just making it with water!

Slow Cooker Chicken Tagine


3 pickled lemon halves (or fresh lemon zest of 1/2 lemons and juice of 1 lemon)
1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
1 cup canned diced tomatoes
1 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/2 cup organic chicken stock
2 Tbsp olive oil
2 pounds organic yukon gold potatoes, cut into 1/4 inch-thick slices
1 pound organic free range chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch cubes
Salt and black pepper, to taste


1. Oil slow cooker with olive oil or cooking spray. Rinse pickled lemons and pat dry (if using). Scoop out lemon pulp and finely chop. If not using pickled lemons, use zest and juice of 3 lemon halves.

2. Place lemon pulp in medium sized bowl with onion, garlic, tomatoes, paprika, cumin, chicken stock, and olive oil.

3. Place potatoes in slow cooker and add half of the lemon mixture; toss well.

4. Season chicken with salt and pepper, to taste. Place chicken on top of potatoes and sprinkle with remaining lemon mixture.

5. Cover and cook on low for 5-6 hours.

6. Transfer chicken and potatoes to platter with a slotted spoon. Keep warm. If there is excess liquid in slow cooker, pour it into a saucepan and simmer until reduced. Pour sauce over chicken and potatoes. Serve hot.

(Recipe adapted from The Mediterranean Slow Cooker by Michele Scicolone)

What are the nutritional benefits of this meal? Chicken is an excellent source of protein and is rich in B vitamins. Canned tomatoes provide lots of vitamins C and have more bioavailable lycopene than fresh tomatoes. Onions are rich in quercetin (a type of antioxidant) and vitamin C. Yukon gold potatoes are an excellent source of vitamin C and a good source of potassium.

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