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A sweet and spicy North African speciality
Milk Street Bowtie Chicken Tagine with Apricots, Butternut Squash and Spinach

Chicken Tagine with Apricots, Butternut Squash and Spinach

1 hour 30 minutes active

Free

A fragrant spice paste seasoned the chicken and acted as a base for the stew. Trim, cut and season the chicken first to let it absorb the flavors while preparing the remaining ingredients. Apricots added sweetness (we preferred sulfured for their vibrant color) that was balanced by briny green olives. An equal amount of carrots can be substituted for the butternut squash. Serve the tagine with couscous, rice or warmed pita bread.

4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
Kosher salt and ground black pepper
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
2 teaspoons ground cumin
2 teaspoons sweet paprika
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1/4 teaspoon ground cayenne
1½ pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs, trimmed and cut into 1½-inch pieces
1 large yellow onion, thinly sliced lengthwise
4 garlic cloves, peeled and smashed
4 teaspoons grated fresh ginger
2½ cups low-sodium chicken broth
1 14-ounce can diced tomatoes
3/4 cup dried apricots, quartered
8 ounces peeled butternut squash, cut into ¾-inch cubes (about 2 cups)
1 cup cracked Greek green olives, pitted and halved
1 cup chopped fresh cilantro, divided
1/4 cup pistachios, toasted and chopped
2 teaspoons grated lemon zest, plus 3 tablespoons lemon juice (1 to 2 lemons)
4 ounces baby spinach (about 4 cups)
Ingredients
  • 4

    tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided

  • Kosher salt and ground black pepper

  • 2

    teaspoons ground cinnamon

  • 2

    teaspoons ground cumin

  • 2

    teaspoons sweet paprika

  • 1

    teaspoon ground coriander

  • ¼

    teaspoon ground cayenne

  • pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs, trimmed and cut into 1½-inch pieces

  • 1

    large yellow onion, thinly sliced lengthwise

  • 4

    garlic cloves, peeled and smashed

  • 4

    teaspoons grated fresh ginger

  • cups low-sodium chicken broth

  • 1

    14-ounce can diced tomatoes

  • ¾

    cup dried apricots, quartered

  • 8

    ounces peeled butternut squash, cut into ¾-inch cubes (about 2 cups)

  • 1

    cup cracked Greek green olives, pitted and halved

  • 1

    cup chopped fresh cilantro, divided

  • ¼

    cup pistachios, toasted and chopped

  • 2

    teaspoons grated lemon zest, plus 3 tablespoons lemon juice (1 to 2 lemons)

  • 4

    ounces baby spinach (about 4 cups)

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Chicken Tagine with Apricots, Butternut Squash and Spinach

Get Ready to Cook

4

Servings

1 hour

30 minutes active

Tip

Don’t drain the diced tomatoes. Their liquid adds sweetness and acidity to the stew.

Ingredients
  • 4

    tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided

  • Kosher salt and ground black pepper

  • 2

    teaspoons ground cinnamon

  • 2

    teaspoons ground cumin

  • 2

    teaspoons sweet paprika

  • 1

    teaspoon ground coriander

  • ¼

    teaspoon ground cayenne

  • pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs, trimmed and cut into 1½-inch pieces

  • 1

    large yellow onion, thinly sliced lengthwise

  • 4

    garlic cloves, peeled and smashed

  • 4

    teaspoons grated fresh ginger

  • cups low-sodium chicken broth

  • 1

    14-ounce can diced tomatoes

  • ¾

    cup dried apricots, quartered

  • 8

    ounces peeled butternut squash, cut into ¾-inch cubes (about 2 cups)

  • 1

    cup cracked Greek green olives, pitted and halved

  • 1

    cup chopped fresh cilantro, divided

  • ¼

    cup pistachios, toasted and chopped

  • 2

    teaspoons grated lemon zest, plus 3 tablespoons lemon juice (1 to 2 lemons)

  • 4

    ounces baby spinach (about 4 cups)

Step 1 of 3

Make the spice paste

2
tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
teaspoons kosher salt
½
teaspoons ground black pepper
2
teaspoons ground cinnamon
2
teaspoons ground cumin
2
teaspoons sweet paprika
1
teaspoon ground coriander
¼
teaspoon ground cayenne

In a small bowl, stir together 2 tablespoons of the oil, 2½ teaspoons salt, ½ teaspoon black pepper, the cinnamon, cumin, paprika, coriander and cayenne.


In a medium bowl, toss the chicken with half the paste, rubbing the meat to coat evenly; set aside.

Step 2 of 3

Continue cooking, add the broth and simmer

pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs, trimmed and cut into 1½-inch pieces
1
large yellow onion, thinly sliced lengthwise
2
tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
4
garlic cloves, peeled and smashed
¼
teaspoon kosher salt
4
teaspoons grated fresh ginger
cups low-sodium chicken broth
1
14-ounce can diced tomatoes
¾
cup dried apricots, quartered
8
ounces peeled butternut squash, cut into ¾-inch cubes (about 2 cups)
1
cup cracked Greek green olives, pitted and halved

In a large Dutch oven over medium-high, combine the onion, garlic, remaining 2 tablespoons of oil and ¼ teaspoon salt.


Cook until the onion is browned and softened, 7 to 9 minutes. Add the ginger and remaining spice paste and cook, stirring constantly, for 1 minute.


Add the broth, tomatoes and apricots and bring to a boil, scraping up any browned bits. Add the chicken, return to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 10 minutes. 


Add the squash and olives, return to a simmer and cook, partially covered, until the liquid has thickened and the squash is tender, 20 to 25 minutes, stirring occasionally and adjusting the heat to maintain a medium simmer.

Step 3 of 3

Make dressing, add spinach, and serve

1
cup chopped fresh cilantro
¼
cup pistachios, toasted and chopped
2
teaspoons grated lemon zest, plus 3 tablespoons lemon juice (1 to 2 lemons)
4
ounces baby spinach (about 4 cups)

Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, stir together ½ cup of the cilantro, the pistachios and lemon zest.


Stir the spinach into the stew and cook until wilted, 1 to 2 minutes. Stir in the remaining ½ cup of cilantro and the lemon juice, then taste and season with salt, pepper and more lemon juice, if necessary.


Serve topped with the cilantro-pistachio mixture.

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