The summer is definitely here and the warm weather made me think of this old recipe I found in 'Baby Led Weaning' by G. Rapley, when my babies were a bit smaller... Another family favourite, filled with fragrant spices, just perfect for warm summer dinners. Cumin, cinnamon, chilli powder, chickpeas, courgettes, chicken, fresh parsley, coriander and mint... close your eyes and you will find yourself in Marrakesh! Oh how I wish...
Prep time 10 minutes, cooking around 40-45 mins
This is what you will need:
one medium size onion, chopped
1 packet of organic chicken thighs
1 medium size courgette - chopped
1 can of chickpeas - drained and rinsed in water
2 teaspoons of ground cumin - lovely spice with lots of health benefits including treating colds, insomnia and extremely good for digestion
1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon
pinch of chilli flakes or powder - if you like heat add a bit extra
black pepper to taste
juice of half a lemon
handful fresh coriander chopped
handful of fresh parsley chopped
optional handful of fresh mint chopped
250ml of chicken or veggie stock - I tend to use half a stock cube, my favourite ones are Kallo (less salt) or if you can use home made stock
This dish goes really well with either quinoa, rice, couscous or millet, the choice is yours - cook enough for 4 people, or if you're cooking for kids it will be enough for a family of 5
Heat the oil in a pan and add chopped onions, fry for few minutes. Add cumin and cinnamon and fry for few more minutes mixing it all together. Add the chicken thighs (one packet usually has 6 thighs), fry them for couple of minutes turning so the chicken browns a bit. Next add stock, chopped coriander and chilli, wait for the stock to start boiling then lower the heat, cover the pan with a lid and simmer for 25 minutes. In the meantime boil a pan of water and cook either quinoa, rice, or millet according to packet instructions. If you're using couscous you won't even have to cook it, just pour hot water over the dry couscous to slightly cover it, then cover the bowl and after few minutes stir with a spoon to check if it's soft enough to eat. I like adding a tablespoon of olive oil to make it more creamy.
After simmering your chicken for 25 minutes, add chickpeas and courgette. Cover the lid and cook for another 15-20 minutes, or until the courgette and chicken thighs are soft.
Once cooked take off heat and add chopped herbs - parsley and if using, mint, add black pepper and lemon juice. Transfer all to a large serving bowl together with your preferred grain.
It might be a slightly more time consuming dish, but I promise it tastes lovely and feeds a large family.
And lets hope the sunny days stay for a bit longer....