matt's braised chicken with preserved lemons and olives

basmati rice
or cous cous
cayenne pepper
coriander seeds
black pepper
ras el hanout
8 pieces chicken thighs
1 whole yellow onion
4 cloves garlic
1 tbsp ginger
smashed and chopped
1/4 cup white wine
1/4 cup chicken stock
1 pinch saffron
3/4 cup olives
1/4 cup preserved lemons
olive oil
greek yogurt
We love any opportunity to use preserved lemons in a dish. This recipe came from my old coworker Matt. We’ll often cook this up for guests because it’s relatively easy to make, and it’s impressive enough to serve to company. All of the proportions can be adjusted to taste and availability. Leftovers keep really well and taste even better the next day.
Cook the rice or prepare the cous cous.
Use a coffee grinder or equivalent to make a spice mix with the turmeric, paprika, cayenne pepper, coriander seeds, black pepper, cinnamon, and ras el hanout. You should aim to have a total of about 2-3 tablespoons of spice mix. Reserve.
Preheat the skillet over medium heat. Add oil and brown the chicken, starting skin-side down. The splatter guard will come in really handy at this point. Transfer the chicken to a plate and reserve.
Sweat the onions, garlic, and ginger with the drippings in the skillet.
Add the spice mix to the skillet and stir. It should create a paste.
Add white wine and reduce for a few minutes. Scrape the fond into the sauce with a wooden spoon or equivalent.
Add chicken stock and saffron.
Transfer the chicken back into the skillet. Spoon sauce over the chicken then simmer covered on low to braise for a total of about 45 minutes.
At the 30 minute mark, add the olives and preserved lemons. Braise for 15 more minutes.
Serve the chicken over the rice or cous cous. Drizzle with olive oil, top with greek yogurt, and sprinkle cilantro.
If you don't own a braiser, use whichever pot that has a domed lid. The domed lid helps recycle flavorful moisture back into the dish while it braises. I found mine for a steal at TJ Maxx.