Let Us Cook: Plum (Prunes)

My ingredient for last weekend was Plum. However, plums are not really in season here at this time of year, so I had to improvise a little, or go for Option B, which was Pear. Easier to work with, but I wanted to give the first option some thought.

After some research, I stumbled upon Prunes, which are essentially dried plums. I can work with that, I thought. A few Google searches later and I stumbled across this Moroccan-style chicken with cous cous dish from the BBC website. The ingredients were simple enough, and while it took some time on the stove, the preparation itself wasn't hard. Just the kind of meal you want to cook when you're kept busy all day with two kids.

The result was interesting. The dish itself looked and smelled wonderful, but was a little too sweet for my liking. I've not experienced much Moroccan cuisine so I can't tell if this is the norm for the culture, however, the meat was soft and tender (albeit a little dry), and the overall dish was flavorful and fed all four of us with plenty of leftovers.

For next time, I would experiment a little more with the seasoning, perhaps season the chicken beforehand as well, and replace Chicken Breast with Chicken Thighs for a more juicy meat. If you're not a fan of overly sweet meat, you may also want to leave out the honey. Recipe below if you feel like giving this a shot!

(Recipe from BBC Food Recipes)


1 large onion, chopped
3 garlic cloves, crushed
275ml/10fl oz chicken stock
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 chicken breasts
1 x 400g/14oz can chopped tomatoes
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
handful dried apricots or prunes (or both), chopped
2 tbsp clear honey
bunch fresh coriander, chopped
couscous, to serve
natural yoghurt, optional, to serve

Put the onion, garlic and chicken stock into a saucepan over a medium heat and bring to the boil. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper and boil for five minutes, or until reduced in volume by half.

Add the chicken, tomatoes, ground cinnamon, ground ginger and dried apricots or prunes. Return the mixture to the boil, then reduce the heat to low, cover with a lid and simmer very gently, stirring occasionally, for about an hour.

Make the couscous addording to the packet instructions.

Just before serving, stir the honey and coriander into the chicken and cook for a further five minutes. Serve with couscous and yoghurt.


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