Moroccan Lemon Chicken with Summer Squash
While the ingredient list for this recipe may seem long, it largely features common pantry spices. When combined, these spices make up a version of ras al-hanut, an intriguing blend that is widely used on Moroccan-style meats and fish. Mixed with a little extra-virgin olive oil, these spices make a wet rub that blackens while cooking, giving the chicken a rich, exotic taste.
4 6-ounce boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon allspice
1/8 teaspoon cayenne
4 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 small onion, thinly sliced
3/4 pound summer squash, thinly sliced crosswise
1/3 cup pitted green olives
2 tablespoons water
2 tablespoons chopped parsley
Pound chicken breasts between two sheets of waxed paper to 1/4 inch thick.
In a small bowl, mix together cumin, ginger, cinnamon, pepper, allspice, salt, and cayenne. Finely grate zest from lemon into spice mixture. Squeeze 1 tablespoon juice from lemon and add to the spice mixture. Add 3 teaspoons of the oil to spice mixture and stir to combine. Spread mixture on both sides of chicken breasts.
Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-heat. Add chicken, in batches if necessary, and cook, turning, until blackened on the outside and cooked through, 3 to 4 minutes per side. Transfer to a plate and loosely cover with foil to keep warm.
Add remaining 1 teaspoon oil to the skillet and return to medium-high heat. Add reserved onion slices and cook, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon and scraping up any browned bits, 3 minutes. Add squash, olives, and 2 tablespoons water. Season lightly with additional salt and pepper; stir well. Cover and cook until squash is tender, 4 to 5 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat. Squeeze a little more lemon juice over chicken and vegetables, sprinkle with parsley, and serve warm.
Use cutlets in place of chicken breasts if you want to avoid the pounding step. Turkey cutlets can also be used.
As prepared, each serving contains 264 calories, 8g total fat, 314mg sodium, 6g total carbohydrate and 41g protein.