Serves 6

Ingredients

3 tablespoons olive oil
1 ½ lbs. boneless, skinless chicken breast and thighs, cut into strips, and patted dry
1 ½ cups onions, diced
1 ½ cups coarsely chopped green bell peppers (about 1-inch pieces)
1 ½ cups thickly sliced carrots
1 ½ cups thickly sliced celery
3 cloves garlic, peeled and left whole
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
2 teaspoons ground cumin
½ teaspoon ground coriander
3 bay leaves
2-3 dried red chiles
2 cups diced firm, ripe plum tomatoes (or other tomatoes), cubed
3 cups chicken stock
1 preserved Moroccan lemon, seeded and diced (if you can’t find preserved lemon, you can use a fresh seeded lemon, but remove half the peel, as it may embitter the stew)
½ teaspoon Harissa paste

Minted Couscous

2 cups couscous, prepared according to package instructions
1 cup flat leaf parsley
1 cup fresh mint
2 tablespoons olive oil
Juice of half a large lemon (about a tablespoon)
Salt to taste

Directions

1. In a casserole set over moderately high heat, warm 1 tablespoon of oil until hot. Add the chicken and cook, stirring, until no longer pink. With a slotted spoon, transfer chicken to a plate.
2. Add the remaining oil to the casserole, along with the onions, bell pepper, carrots, celery, garlic, salt, pepper, cumin, coriander, bay leaves and chiles, and cook the mixture over moderate heat, covered, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes. Add the tomatoes and cook, stirring, for 3 minutes more. Add the stock and lemon, bring to a boil, and then simmer, covered for 5 minutes, or until vegetables are just tender.
3. Return the chicken to the casserole. Add the Harissa paste and salt to taste, stir to combine, and let simmer, covered for 5 minutes. Remove from heat and discard bay leaves before serving.

For the Minted Couscous:
Prepare couscous according to package instructions. Keep covered until ready to serve, as it will stay warm and moist. For herb mixture, put mint, parsley, olive oil, lemon juice and salt into a blender or small food processor. You may need a tablespoon or two of water to help the mixture blend. Gently toss herb mixture in with the cooked couscous, and serve as a side to the tagine.

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