Recipe: Spiced Grilled Chicken

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27 Oct Recipe: Spiced Grilled Chicken

You’ve all heard the expression “Dollars to doughnuts.” But in my world the expression should be, “Doughnuts to Morocco.” Those versed in Moroccan cuisine might assume the connection comes from sfenj, the popular Moroccan street food that closely resembles the North American doughnut. You’d get a Brownie point for your knowledge, but you’d be wrong. That logic is far too straight-forward.

When Joanne and I made the hand-forged sour cream old-fashioned doughnuts, the conversation started with how much we missed cooking together and quickly bounced about like doughnuts frying in hot oil. We careened through brownie baking in our shoebox of a kitchen, rolled past knitting expeditions and landed hard on travel memories.

By the time the doughnuts were being packed up, we had made a pact to celebrate our 50th birthdays with the two of us taking a trip together. Like we had to Banff, Montreal, Cape Cod, England, Lisbon and New Zealand.

Sometime in 2013, we will take a trip together. Some place we’ve never been. Somewhere bright and lively and exotic, filled with smells and sights unlike those on Southern Ontario. Somewhere our husbands have no interest in going.

Morocco is high on the list. And I’ve been dreaming of tagines and sweet North African spicing ever since.

We’ve got more than a year to plan. Where would you go?

Review in Brief

This will appeal to: Anyone who wants to explore and experience the exotic, slightly-sweet spicing of classic Moroccan cuisine. Not familiar with the food? The photos alone will convince you to give it a try.

Must try recipes:

  • Spiced Lentils: Hearty, healthy and bursting with classic spices, this guilt-free dish will appeal to everyone.
  • Prawns with herbs and preserved lemons: Even if you don’t have preserved lemons on hand, you can enjoy this simple but delicious dish.
  • Almond Filo Coil: This dessert is similar to baklava, only in an intriguing spiral shape. The recipe is supposed to keep for 2 days, but I’m not sure it would last that long in my house.

Biggest delight: The photographs. Sure, you get plenty of mouth-watering food shots, but you also get pictures of market places, the people, the landscape, and the lifestyle. It’s as if Ruth Reichl had taken over an issue of National Geographic.

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No Comments
  • Amy Proulx
    Posted at 14:25h, 27 October Reply

    I highly recommend Morocco. Having lived and taught there, I fell in love with the magical relationship that Moroccans have with their food. Making Moroccan food in Canada pales in comparison to the symphony of senses that you’ll experience with food over there. Imagine eating your chicken, on the top of an ancient mud building, the red sun setting behind an ancient mosque, the sound of the market hawkers in the distance, the smoke of charcoal grills and incense wafting through…

    • Charmian Christie
      Posted at 17:18h, 27 October Reply

      You should work for the Moroccan Tour Board! This is the kind of thing I am hoping to experience. And the book’s photos captures some of these kinds of moments.

      We MUST get together and talk sometime soon. Perhaps with Joanne who will love to her your stories.

  • Glo McNeill
    Posted at 13:09h, 30 October Reply

    Most of my travels were over 40 years ago but I can still give you some good rule of thumb guidelines:
    1. Never visit anywhere where there are more flies than people
    2. Never visit a third world country that has not yet had its revolution
    3. Never visit a country that has more people than trees.
    4. Never visit a country where the native population can’t afford to eat in the same places you eat.

    The one place I would love to revisit is Venice. I dream about it. Nothing ever changes there, even, I suspect, the people are the same or descendants of, medieval dwellers. The same locations have held bakeries, shoe stores, hotels, for hundreds of years. Even the pigeons can trace their lineage back to the 13th century.

    • Charmian Christie
      Posted at 08:54h, 03 November Reply

      Glo, I think that’s the best travel advice I’ve heard in YEARS.

      I’ve been to Venice and it’s a magical place, but very crowded and the people aren’t as gregarious as the Florentines. But I don’t blame them. Their city is invaded daily, year round. Even those pigeons wish the tourists would give them some peace.

  • Amy Proulx
    Posted at 17:54h, 30 October Reply

    Come on down to Niagara for a weekend once The Fair is over. We’ve got lots of room, and more than plenty of things to see and do within a half hour drive.

    • Charmian Christie
      Posted at 08:52h, 03 November Reply

      I adore Niagara. Done some wine touring but am sure you know of spots that would be amazing.

      And be careful what you offer. I do take people up on things, you know. Just ask Julie Van Rosendaal :-)

  • Judith Rutty Godfrey
    Posted at 19:01h, 16 November Reply

    Just want you to know that I’ll d

    Oh damn,,,,,I
    ;;;l;l respond later……it’s the wine~!

    • Charmian Christie
      Posted at 13:33h, 20 November Reply

      Laughing out loud at this incoherent comment. Hope you enjoyed the wine!

  • Lana
    Posted at 13:28h, 20 November Reply

    How wonderful that you have a friend who shares your love of cooking and your “Reisefieber”:) My oldest daughter is my best travel companion, but I am afraid that pretty soon she will find someone she’d rather climb the pyramids with:)
    Northern Africa attracts me, too, and I second your pick of Morocco.
    BTW, I love spatchcocked chickens! You can have so much more of that crispy skin!

    • Charmian Christie
      Posted at 13:38h, 20 November Reply

      I am lucky! My husband is a wonderful travel companion to big cities, but the “exotic” places don’t interest him. It’s great to have someone who likes to travel to the less urban locals.

      Thanks for endorsing my North African choice. We have lots of travel options and the hardest part will be narrowing it down to one destination.

      Hope you and your eldest daughter get to the pyramids together. That’s on my bucket list, too!

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