Sunday, April 5, 2015

Roasted Chicken Thighs with Harissa Tomato Sauce

I'm still playing with all the wonderful foods I brought back from Israel. At the food market in Tel Aviv, I bought a big jar of Harissa as Martin likes hot food and I thought it would be fun to make a dish using it. I had some chicken thighs to cook and originally thought of rubbing them with the Harissa before roasting them. But, I'm not very good with hot foods, so I decided to tame the heat by adding some Tomato Paste and Chicken Broth based on a recipe from Epicurious that used this kind of sauce for Chickpeas, although I am avoiding them right now on my FODMAP diet. I thought this sauce worked perfectly with the chicken and it was delicious over Basmati Rice. Of course, I served extra Harissa on the side so Martin could jazz things up.  I was so pleased with how this turned out that I'm sharing it with you. It can easily be doubled, just brown the chicken in two batches. If you buy Harissa, make sure you taste it first to see how hot it is as the heat varies widely.  And if you like hot food, this dish can be made as spicy as you like!

Roasted Chicken Thighs with Harissa Tomato Sauce

1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
4 Chicken Thighs (with bone and skin)
1 small Onion, chopped
1 Garlic Clove, minced
2 Tablespoons Tomato Paste
1 - 2 Tablespoon Harissa
1 teaspoon Cumin
1 cup Chicken Broth

Heat oven to 425 degrees. In an ovenproof frying pan (cast iron is great), heat the olive oil and place the chicken thighs skin side down. Cook for 3 – 5 minutes or until skin is crispy and brown. Turn and cook for an additional 3 – 5 minutes. Remove the chicken to a plate.  Pour off all but 1 Tablespoon of drippings. Put in the onion and garlic and cook until the onion just begins to brown.  Add in Harissa, Tomato Paste and Chicken Broth.  Stir to combine.  Put chicken thighs back in with the skin side up.  Place in the oven and cook for 25 minutes.

Serve with Rice, Couscous or Potatoes.

Five Element Analysis

Harissa and Tomatoes both belong to the Fire Element so that element is well represented.  Chicken and Chicken Broth contribute the Wood Element.  The Onion and Garlic bring in the Metal Element.  The Earth Element is missing, so it would be especially good with Potatoes. Or, it would go well with a Cucumber Salad as that would add in the Earth Element. The Water Element is missing too so be sure to add something from that element in the meal – like and Eggplant dish or a very dark leafy green like sautéed Lacinato Kale,  which adds a bit more Wood too. Chickpeas would also be good for more Water.

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