Chicken tajine...

The traditional tajine pot is formed entirely of a heavy clay, which is sometimes painted or glazed. It consists of two parts: a base unit that is flat and circular with low sides, and a large cone or dome-shaped cover that rests inside the base during cooking. The cover is so designed to promote the return of all condensation to the bottom. With the cover removed, the base can be taken to the table for serving. Now a days with Moroccan cuisine being so popular amongst international chefs you see tajine dishes being made on popular tv shows and in well know cookbooks, however most of the time the dish is not exactly made in a "Tajine" but made in regular kitchen pots. A Moroccan would not call this a tajine, since it is not cooked in a tajine. Tajines are slow cooked under low heat, making the meat extremely tender with a light sauce and vegetables cooked to perfection. In a classic Moroccan tagine the meat would only take up 1/4 of the tagine while the rest is made out of a medley of vegetables of your choice or whatever is in season. Making something in a clay pot that takes a few hours to cook may seem like a hard job but it really makes a housewive day a whole lot easier, put the tagine together, cover, and go about your cleaning, after 2 hours (give or take) you will have the best stress free meal on your table ready to be scooped up with crusty wheat bread.

The tajine above consist of whole free range chicken, onions, garlic, coriander, potatoes, carrots, topped with fresh figs. The combination may seem a bit unusual for those not familiar with the the North African cuisine where the mixing of fruit with savory dishes is very common. The spices used in the dish vary but the ones in this particular tajine are curry, ginger, tumaric, pepper, and saffron making the already fragrant dish just that more appealing to your smell senses.

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