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Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Chicken with 40 Cloves of Garlic


This Chicken with 40 Cloves of Garlic dish is another recipe from Moorish by Greg & Lucy Malouf that I had made a few weeks ago, especially for D.

This is a well-known French peasant dish, apparently, and the garlic is cooked in its skin, becoming soft and velvety smooth and creamy. Being lazy, I usually have a large jar of peeled garlic in the fridge, so, I simply threw in a whole bunch.

So, even though I didn't add exactly 40 cloves of garlic, I added about two handfuls of peeled garlic cloves - enough to get a bold garlic flavor they suggest. Also, the dish uses Merguez sausage from North Africa, but, I substituted mock chicken sausages.

Basically, it is a stew of sorts with bold and interesting flavors and chunks of chicken, sausage and vegetables. And, as usual, I simply could not execute the recipe exactly as they specify, so, this is an approximation :)

2-3 heads of garlic -OR- 30-40 cloves of garlic
2-4 favorite sausages
2-3 large potatoes cut into chunks, or several baby potatoes
4 tomatoes, halved
1-2 medium onion cut into chunks, -OR- 6-8 small shallots, peeled whole
1-2 red bell peppers, roasted
3-4 cups of chicken or vegetable stock
2-3 boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into chunks
1-2 Tbsp Hungarian Paprika
2 Tbsp coriander powder (for rubbing the chicken pieces)
2-4 Tbsp Sumac (some for rubbing the chicken pieces)
2 Tbsp Taklia**
a few strands of saffron (optional)
a few sprigs of rosemary
salt and pepper to taste
¼ cup or so of lemon juice
olive oil (a few Tbsps)
garnish: parsley, rosemary, pickled chilies

** Taklia is an all-purpose mix used in Lebanon and Syria, usually added at the end of the cooking for its aromatic flavoring

  1. Taklia: can be prepared ahead of time and saved in the fridge for other use - combine about 6 cloves of minced garlic and 2-3 Tbsp of coriander powder with some sea salt and olive oil
  2. Marinate the chicken in some red wine vinegar, some lemon juice, after rubbing in the sumac and coriander powder, while assembling the rest of the ingredients
  3. Pre-heat the oven to 400°F
  4. Assemble the rest of the ingredients in a casserole dish - pan sear the sausages first to give it a nice skin, par-cook the potatoes in the microwave to speed up cooking time
  5. Pan sear the marinated chicken chunks to develop a good outer crust and throw it into the casserole dish with the rest of the ingredients
  6. Stir in the Taklia with enough stock and lemon juice till well incorporated
  7. Bake in a 400°F oven for about 45 min to an hour, checking for liquids often, and cover with foil if top seems to be drying out
  8. garnish with pickled chilies, parsley and some fresh rosemary
  9. Serve with buttered rice, as suggested in the cookbook

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  • At 2:10 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I *heart* garlic and the name is tempting enough to make me want to try this.



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