About this recipe:Aromatic cumin, coriander and cinnamon give these chicken breasts a Middle Eastern flavour, and including chickpeas further enhances the ethnic theme. Courgettes and sugarsnap peas add colour and all the benefits of fresh vegetables.
450g (1lb) skinless, boneless chicken breasts
1 tbsp olive oil
1 large onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground coriander
1 cinnamon stick
2 large courgettes, halved lengthways and sliced
1 can (about 400g) no-salt-added chopped tomatoes
200ml (7fl oz) low-sodium vegetable stock
225g (8oz) sugarsnap peas
1 can (about 410g) chickpeas, drained and rinsed
For the couscous
250g (9oz) couscous
400ml (14fl oz) boiling water
1 tbsp olive oil
10g (¼oz) butter
pepper to taste
chopped fresh coriander to garnish
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Method Prep:10min › Cook:20min › Ready in:30min
Cut the chicken on the diagonal into strips about 1cm (½in) thick. Heat the oil in a wok or heavy frying pan. Add the chicken, onion and garlic, and cook over medium-high heat, stirring constantly, for about 2 minutes or until the chicken turns white with golden brown flecks.
Reduce the heat to low and add the ground cumin and coriander and cinnamon stick. Cook, stirring constantly, for 1 minute. Add the courgettes and stir well, then add the tomatoes with their juice and the stock. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Meanwhile, put the couscous in a saucepan (off the heat) and pour over the boiling water. Add the oil. Stir well, then cover and leave to soak for 5 minutes.
Add the sugarsnap peas and chickpeas to the chicken mixture. Cook for a further 5 minutes, stirring frequently.
Stir the butter into the couscous and cook over a moderate heat for 3 minutes, fluffing up with a fork to separate the grains. Season with pepper. Pile the couscous on to a serving platter. Spoon the chicken on top and garnish with chopped coriander. Serve hot.
Believing chickpeas to be powerful aphrodisiacs, the Romans fed them to their stallions to improve their performance. Although this reputation seems to have been forgotten now, chickpeas do contribute good amounts of soluble fibre as well as useful amounts of iron, folate, vitamin E and manganese to the diet.
Very tasty and easy to make, I didn't use sugarsnaps or chick peas, but instead added a tin of drained butter beans at the end, it was delicious! I might serve with rice next time and even try it with pork, chorizo or beef (although not truly Moroccan!) but the sauce was so delicious it would lend itself to many other adaptations, many thanks for posting this! - 06 Feb 2013