Moroccan Chicken

with Eggplant, Tomatoes and Almonds

  1. 6 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  2. 3 cups sliced onions
  3. 6 large garlic cloves, minced
  4. 1 tablespoon Hungarian sweet paprika
  5. 1 1/2 teaspoons coarse kosher salt
  6. 1 teaspoon turmeric
  7. 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  8. 1 teaspoon fennel seeds, ground
  9. 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  10. 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  11. 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  12. 2 cups drained canned diced tomatoes (from 28-ounce can)
  13. 1 cup water
  14. 3 tablespoons (or more) fresh lemon juice
  15. 8 chicken thighs with bones, skinned
  16. 8 chicken drumsticks, skinned
  17. 1 large eggplant, unpeeled, cut into 1-inch cubes
  18. 1 tablespoon chopped fresh marjoram
  19. 1/2 cup whole blanched almonds or slivered almonds, toasted
  20. Chopped fresh cilantro

Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in heavy large wide pot over medium heat. Add onions and garlic. Cover and cook until onions are soft, about 10 minutes. Add paprika, salt, turmeric, coriander, fennel, pepper, cumin and ginger; stir 1 minute. Add tomatoes, 1 cup water, and 3 tablespoons lemon juice; bring to boil. Arrange all chicken in single layer in pot; spoon some sauce over. Bring to boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover and simmer 15 minutes. Turn chicken over, cover and simmer until chicken is tender, about 20 minutes longer.

Meanwhile, preheat over to 400 degrees F. Brush large rimmed baking sheet with olive oil. Place eggplant and remaining 4 tablespoons olive oil in large bowl; toss to coat. Spread eggplant out on prepared baking sheet and bake until soft and brown, stirring occasionally, about 25 minutes. (Chicken and eggplant can be made 1 day ahead. Cool slightly. Refrigerate separately until cold, then cover and keep refrigerated.)

Stir eggplant and marjoram into chicken. Simmer uncovered 10 minutes to heat through and blend flavors. Season stew to taste with more lemon juice, if desired, and salt and pepper. Transfer chicken to large shallow bowl. Sprinkle with almonds and cilantro.

Yield: 2 large or 4 small servings.