Moroccan Chicken with Preserved Lemon

It is hard to see the chicken through all the turmeric stained onions, olives and preserved lemon – but it is in there! After researching a number of different methods of Moroccan chicken, I opted for this recipe because of its simplicity and timeliness. Most chicken tagine recipes require a laundry list of odd spices (which can add up your grocery bill), a full day of cooking and an entire bird cut into pieces. With limited resources at my disposal,  I picked a quick recipe with boneless skinless chicken breasts and limited spices (I only had to purchase one). This recipe took less than 40 minutes to prepare and was an easy entry into cooking with unique spices.

Moroccan Chicken with Preserved Lemon and Green Olives from Gourmet Magazine December 1999

  • 4 boneless skinless chicken breast halves
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 medium onions, sliced 1/4 inch thick
  • 2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 8 pieces preserved Meyer lemon
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine
  • 16 pitted green olives, halved
  • 2 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh cilantro

  • Pat chicken dry, then season with salt and pepper. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a 12-inch nonstick skillet over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking, then sauté chicken until golden brown, about 3 minutes on each side. Transfer chicken to a plate and keep warm, covered.

    Add remaining tablespoon oil to skillet and reduce heat to moderate. Cook onions and garlic, stirring frequently, until softened but not browned, 8 to 10 minutes. Add turmeric and pepper and cook, stirring, 1 minute.

    Scrape pulp from preserved lemon, reserving for another use. Cut rind into thin strips and add to onions with broth, wine, and olives.

    Return chicken, with any juices accumulated on plate, to skillet. Braise, covered, until chicken is cooked through, about 12 minutes. Serve sprinkled with cilantro.



    1. You had a recipe a while back for a brazillian pot roast. It was delicious and I’ve lost the recipe. Can you direct me to it?

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