, , , , , , , , , , , ,

If you were thinking you may not click on this link because you aren’t even able to identify Morocco on a map let alone a dish from there, I applaud you for giving it a shot. This is a dish I stumbled upon during Restaurant Week my first year out of college, and I’ve been making it ever since. I know you’re tired of Italian. Chinese. Even Mexican. (Okay, fine. I’ve never been tired of Mexican a day in my life, but you understand.) Why not try something new?

I’ll be honest. I don’t love my slow cooker. No matter what I throw in it, it all ends up tasting the same. Am I the only one who has this problem? Beef, chicken, even soups—they all just taste..slower cooker-y. It’s not a bad taste. I don’t hate it. But it’s not spectacular. Also, I have an irrational fear of fire. Always have. So around 3pm on a Slow Cooker day, I start to have anxiety attacks at work, needing to devise a plan to come home early and make sure I haven’t burnt my apartment down.

This is one of the rare meals that I love making in the slow cooker. It just works. You can use ground chicken or chicken breast and shred it after it has cooked, whichever you prefer. I used ground chicken. I’ll be honest—I didn’t even thaw it out. Frozen ground chicken, right in the slow cooker. It was that kind of morning. And it worked. Chicken is chicken though. What really gets me going on this dish is the sauce. The sauce is sweet from the brown sugar and paprika but spicy from the cayenne and ginger. The cumin adds smokiness to it. The dried cherries get reconstituted by the sauce adding just a little bit more sweetness. It definitely has a unique taste, but not so odd that picky eaters wouldn’t enjoy it. I know there are a lot of spices in it. And you probably don’t feel like going out and buying spices. But here’s a tip: cumin, cayenne pepper, and paprika make a hell of a Mexican seasoning. Buy them for this dish, and you’ll never need to buy taco seasoning again. If you’re looking for a new dish to spice up your repertoire, I encourage you to give this a try.

The Ingredients

½ cup chicken broth
8 oz tomato sauce
¼ cup apple cider vinegar
1 tbsp + 2 tsp brown sugar
2 tsp salt
1 tsp ginger
1 tsp cumin
2 tsp paprika
½ tsp cayenne pepper
1 tbsp minced garlic
1 lb ground chicken or chicken breasts
1 can chickpeas (garbanzo beans)
¾ dried cherries
parsley (optional)
4 servings of couscous, prepared with butter, parsley, and olive oil
Sour cream to top (optional)

The Directions

  1. Place chicken, chickpeas, and dried cherries in slow cooker.

  2. In a bowl, mix together first 10 ingredients. Pour over chicken in slow cooker.  I sprinkle it with a little dried parsley.

  3. Cook on low heat for 6-8 hours.

  4. Prepare the couscous according to directions on box. I mix mine with butter, olive oil, and a little parsley. Try to avoid the couscous with flavor seasoning packets or pick a flavor that would complement the spices we’re using here.
  5. Put couscous in a bowl and top with the Moroccan chicken. I like to top mine with a little bit of parsley, sour cream, and paprika.

Enjoy! 🙂