One-Pot Moroccan Chicken and Rice Bake
As I am coming up with my meal plan each week, I ask my family if they have any requests for dinner and almost every week my husband asks for this dish. It is adapted from a recipe in Yotam Ottolenghi’s Jerusalem cookbook. I tried to simplify it as much as possible, while keeping all of the amazing flavors.
- 3 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
- 2 1/4 - 2 1/2 lbs. bone-in chicken thighs or breasts, with or without skin
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1/2 tsp. black pepper
- 1 yellow onion thinly sliced
- 1 tsp. ground cardamom
- 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp. paprika
- 1 clove garlic minced, about 1/2 tsp.
- 1 1/2 cups basmati rice
- 1/2 cup dried figs chopped, or use currants, raisins, or prunes
- 1/4 cup fresh flat leaf parsley chopped (optional)
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Heat 2 Tbsp. oil in a Dutch oven or an oven-safe deep skillet over medium heat. Put the chicken on a plate and sprinkle and rub it with ½ tsp. salt and the pepper. When the oil is shimmering, put the chicken in the pot and sear for 5 minutes on both sides (cook without moving it - this is important because it starts the cooking process). Remove the chicken from the pot and return it to the plate.
- Add the remaining Tbsp. oil and then the onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until they have softened and are starting to brown, 5 - 7 minutes.
- Stir in the cardamom, cinnamon, paprika, and garlic and let it cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
- Add the rice and give it a good stir so that all the rice gets coated in the oil. Then add the figs (or currants, raisins, or prunes), ½ tsp. salt, 2 1/2 cups water and stir well. Turn the heat to high and bring the water to a boil.
- Once it is boiling, turn off the heat and place the chicken on top of the rice, skin side up. Put the lid on the Dutch oven or skillet (cover the skillet tightly with foil if you don’t have a lid for the skillet) and move it to the oven. Bake for 30 minutes.
- After 30 minutes, check to make sure the liquid is all absorbed. If not, remove the lid and let it cook for 5 more minutes.
- When all the liquid is absorbed and the chicken is cooked through, remove it from the oven and let it sit for 10 minutes, with the lid on. Serve it immediately with the parsley (optional), refrigerate it for up to 3 days, or freeze it for up to 3 months.
Instant Pot Directions
- Put the chicken on a plate and sprinkle and rub it with ½ tsp. salt and the pepper. Set Instant Pot to the SAUTE mode, then add 2 Tbsp. oil. Put the chicken in the pot and sear for 5 minutes on both sides (cook without moving it - this is important because it starts the cooking process). Remove the chicken from the pot and return it to the plate. Add the onions and spices to the pot and sauté stirring occasionally, until the onions have softened and are starting to brown and spices are fragrant, about 5 - 7 minutes. Turn off the SAUTE mode and add the water, rice, and figs (or currants, raisins, or prunes), stirring to combine. Nestle the chicken on top of the rice, and pressure cook on HIGH for 20 minutes, then use Natural Pressure Release for 5 minutes, followed by Quick Pressure Release. (Clickhere for Instant Pot tips and a list of Scramble recipes that have IP conversions.)
Do Ahead or Delegate: Season the chicken with salt and pepper and store in the fridge, slice the onion, combine the spices, chop the figs (or prunes). Scramble Flavor Booster: Add more garlic and black pepper. Tip: We often advocate for keeping your chef’s knife sharp—it will make your chopping safer and quicker. As well, when cutting onions, a sharp knife will reduce the onion's release of enzymes that causes the eye irritation that we’re probably all familiar with. Nutritional Information Per Serving (% based upon daily values): Calories 386, Total Fat: 10g, 15%; Saturated Fat: 2g, 8.5%; Cholesterol: 71mg, 23.5%; Sodium: 472mg, 19.5%; Total Carbohydrate: 48g, 16%; Dietary Fiber: 3g, 10%; Sugar: 7g; Protein: 26g Like this recipe? Check out The Scramble's family-friendly meal plans to see just how simple getting dinner on the table can be!
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