Chicken is a versatile protein that can take center stage on any table. There are scores of ways to prepare chicken, and this recipe for “Pollo Harissa” is seasoned with a fiery, spicy mix that is truly aromatic. Enjoy it, courtesy of España: Exploring the Flavors of Spain (Gibbs Smith) by James Campbell Caruso.
(Roasted Harissa Chicken with Couscous)
1 whole roasting chicken, rinsed
1 lemon, cut into 4 pieces
6 cloves garlic
Harissa (see below)
2 cups couscous
3 cups chicken stock
Heat the oven to 375 °F. Fill chicken cavity with lemon pieces and garlic. Rub the chicken generously with harissa. Sprinkle with salt.
Put the couscous and chicken stock in an oven-safe baking dish. Place the dressed chicken on top. Bake covered for 45 minutes. Remove the cover and bake for another 15 minutes, until chicken is cooked through. Serve with a tossed mix of cucumber, cilantro, lemon juice, and oil.
1 tablespoon coriander seed
1 tablespoon caraway seed
1 teaspoon cumin seed
4 large cloves garlic, unpeeled
4 large red bell peppers
½ cup extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon sugar
2 tablespoons crushed New Mexico red chiles
Salt and pepper to taste
Stir coriander, caraway and cumin in a small skillet over medium-high heat until aromatic, about 30 seconds. Transfer to a food processor. Cook garlic in the same skillet, covered, over medium-low heat until tender, about 10 minutes, turning occasionally. Let garlic cool, then peel it and add to processor. Char bell peppers over a gas flame or in a broiler until blackened on all sides. Enclose in a paper bag; let stand 10 minutes. Peel, seed, and coarsely chop peppers. Add peppers, oil, sugar, and crushed red pepper to processor. Puree. Season with salt and pepper.