You need to try this Fig and Ginger Chicken Tajine from one of my favorite new cookbooks of this year, Mediterranean Paleo Cooking by Caitlin Weeks, NC, Chef Nabil Boumrar, and Diane Sanfilippo.
Tajines are traditional North African dishes named after the type of clay pots they were cooked in. This chicken tajine recipe has an amazing combination of the traditional seasonings and ingredients of these slow-cooked stews, including cumin, coriander, cinnamon, fresh ginger, and dried figs. The dish pairs perfectly over cauliflower rice or try the cauliflower saffron couscous recipe from the book.
I love the flavors of Mediterranean cuisine and am so impressed by this trio’s creativity in bringing the classic flavors and dishes of the Mediterranean to a gluten-free lifestyle like grain-free falafel, pita bread, and biscotti. There is even a whole section for grain-free pizza and pasta in Mediterranean Paleo Cooking.
Caitlin is a nutrition consultant and runs the popular blog Grass Fed Girl. Her husband, Nabil is a chef and grew up in Algiers, Algeria. Last year they released their ebook version of this book – you can check out my review here including a recipe for Chocolate Pot De Creme. This newly updated print version includes contributions from Diane Sanfilippo, a certified nutrition consultant, author, and popular blog and podcaster.
If you’re looking for some great new recipes – whether you eat paleo or not – try this book with its amazing variety of meat, poultry, fish, and dessert recipes. Caitlin and Nail traveled to North Africa twice to research the book – so you’re getting authentic flavors and dishes!
Mediterranean Paleo Cooking includes over 150 recipes, chef’s tips, and nutritionist’s notes. It begins with a brief tour of this region and its flavor variations and health lessons from the Mediterranean lifestyle. There is some basic paleo diet principles and tips – which, if you’re not familiar with the term, is really all about eating real whole foods. There are also a ton of special diet resources: a FODMAP guide, SCD/GAPS swaps, Autoimmune Paleo protocols (including a meal-plan!!), low-carb swaps, and nut-free and/or egg-free labels for every recipe.
The book itself is beautiful. Every recipe has a picture – don’t you wish all cookbooks did that? There is even a photo recipe index!
The next recipe I want to try is their fig brownies, or maybe the za’atar and garlic roasted duck, or the lamb dolmas… there is also a dairy-free creme caramel recipe that I’m drooling over. I could literally cook the book from cover to cover (except for the few recipes that aren’t suitable for kosher diets). The recipes are all doable and all look delicious.
Fig and Ginger Chicken Tajine
Serve over cauliflower rice.
1 tablespoon coconut oil or red palm oil
1 whole (5-pound) chicken, cut into 8 pieces
1 medium white onion, diced
2 teaspoons minced garlic
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 tablespoons grated fresh ginger
fine sea salt and ground black pepper
4 cups Chicken Broth
1 1/2 cups whole dried figs
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro, for garnish
1. Melt the fat in a large stockpot over medium heat, then add the chicken and sauté for 10 minutes, or until browned.
2. Add the onion, garlic, cumin, coriander, cinnamon, ginger, and a pinch of salt and pepper and sauté the mixture for 5 minutes, or until the onion is translucent.
3. Add the broth, cover, and bring to a boil. Remove the lid and simmer, uncovered, for 20 minutes. Add the dried figs and continue to simmer the mixture for another 20 minutes, uncovered.
4. Garnish with the cilantro and enjoy.
Slow Cooker instructions
Place all of the ingredients except the cilantro in a slow cooker and cook for 5 to 6 hours on low.