1/2 C Almonds, Whole, blanched, toasted and cooled
3 T Sugar
1 t Cinnamon
For the filling:
1/4 t Saffron threads, crumbled
2 T Hot water
1 Onion, medium, chopped
2 Garlic cloves, shaved thin
1 1/2 sticks (3/4 C) Unsalted butter
3/4 t Ginger, ground
1/2 t Black pepper, fresh
2 lb Chicken, variety of pieces for flavor
1 1/2 C Chicken broth, low sodium
3 Large Eggs, whipped lightly
1/4 C plus 2 T Parsley, fresh chopped
3 T Coriander, fresh
1 1/2 T Lemon juice
18 sheets (about 1 1/2 packages) phyllo Number 4 ultra-thin if possible
Powdered sugar and cinnamon for sprinkling
2 t ras el hanout
Ras el hanout, Moroccan spice blend
1/2 t Anise seed
1 t Fennel seeds
8 Allspice berries, whole
seeds from 8 Cardamom pods
8 Cloves, whole
15 Black peppercorns, whole
1 Cinnamon stick , broken in half
1 T Sesame seeds
1 t Coriander seeds
1/2 t Cumin seed
Pinch Red pepper flakes, dried
1 T Ginger
1 t Nutmeg, ground
In a food processor grind fine almonds, granulated sugar, and cinnamon. Almond sugar may be made 1 day ahead and kept covered in a cool dark place.
In a small bowl combine saffron with hot water and let stand 10 minutes.
In a large heavy bottom pot, sautée onion and garlic, till onion is golden. Reduce heat to medium, add ginger, ras el hanout, and pepper. Cook mixture, approximately 2 minutes, while stirring.
Add chicken pieces, broth, and saffron mixture and simmer, covered, turning the chicken once, till chicken tender and reaches 165. Let chicken stand in cooking liquid off heat 30 minutes. Transfer chicken to a plate, reserving cooking liquid cool enough to handle, shred chicken. Discard skin and bones.
Bring reserved liquid to boil, stirring occasionally, until reduced to about 1 3/4 C. Reduce heat to medium and add eggs in a stream, whisking. Cook mixture, stirring, until eggs are set, about 2 minutes. Remove kettle from heat and pour egg mixture into a coarse sieve set over a bowl. Let mixture drain undisturbed 10 minutes before discarding liquid. Transfer egg mixture to a bowl. Stir in chicken, parsley, coriander, lemon juice, and salt and pepper to taste and chill. Filling may be made 1 day ahead and kept chilled, covered.
Preheat oven to 425°F. Grease 2 large shallow baking pans.
In saucepan, melt remaining 9 T Butter and keep warm, not hot.
Cut phyllo sheets in half lengthwise and stack between 2 sheets wax paper. Cover wax paper sheets with a kitchen towel. On a work surface arrange a half sheet of phyllo with short side facing you and brush with melted butter. On this, layer and brush 3 more half sheets of phyllo in the same manner.
Sprinkle 1 T Almond sugar on short side of phyllo nearest you to cover about 2 1/2-by 4-inch area, leaving a 1-inch border on 3 edges. Put 1/3 C Chicken mixture over almond sugar and spread out slightly. Top chicken mixture with 1 more tablespoon almond sugar and roll up filling in phyllo, folding in sides after first roll. Transfer b'stilla immediately.
Form 8 more b'stillas in the same manner with remaining phyllo, butter, almond sugar, and chicken mixture, chilling each b'stilla as it is made. B'stillas may be prepared up to this point 4 hours ahead and kept chilled, covered lightly with plastic wrap once cold.
Bake chilled b'stillas in oven until tops and ends are puffed and browned, 15 to 20 minutes. Cool b'stillas slightly on a rack. Sprinkle b'stillas with powdered sugar and cinnamon and serve warm.
Ras el hanout
In a spice grinder or cleaned coffee grinder grind fine anise seed, fennel seeds, allspice berries, cardamom seeds, cloves, peppercorns, cinnamon stick, sesame seeds, coriander seeds, cumin seed, and red pepper flakes, In a small bowl stir together ground spice mixture, mace, ginger, and nutmeg until thoroughly mixed.
Delicious Braised Moroccan chicken dish from Laura Dewell, chef-owner of Pirosmani restaurant in Seattle.
2 T Caraways Seeds
2 T Harissa
2 T Lemon juice, fresh
2 T Cumin, ground
1 1/2 T Coriander, ground
1 T Paprika
1 T Olive oil
2 t Salt
1 1" piece peeled Ginger, fresh
4 Garlic cloves, peeled
1/2 t Saffron threads
2 3 lb whole chickens, cut in half, backbones removed
1/4 C (1/2 stick) Butter
3 C Onions, minced
4 C Water, approximately
1/4 C Cilantro, chopped
Pre heat oven to 350
Stir caraway seeds in heavy small skillet over medium heat until fragrant, about 1 minute. Transfer to processor. Add next 10 ingredients. Purée until coarse paste forms. Rub paste all over chicken halves.
Melt butter in large pot over medium heat. Add onions; sauté until beginning to soften, about 5 minutes. Add chicken halves to pot. Add enough water to almost cover chicken. Bring to boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer until chicken is tender, turning once, about 45 minutes.
Transfer chicken, skin side up, to baking sheet. Add cilantro to liquid in pot. Boil until reduced to 3 cups, about 20 minutes. Season with salt. Meanwhile, preheat broiler. Broil chicken until golden brown, about 6 minutes. Transfer chicken to platter. Serve with braising liquid.