Thanks to French Fridays with Dorie, I'm blogging two days in a row. Wow! Unfortunately, this week it became deadline cooking. But, the dish was worth the effort. This week's recipe from Around My French Table is chicken b'stilla.
It's a sort of Moroccan chicken pot pie. Although there were several steps and a few hours involved, it really wasn't a difficult dish to make. I love saffron and was excited to use it with a different combination of flavors.
I marinated the chicken thighs in onion, garlic, coriander, cinnamon, and ginger, and saffron overnight in the fridge. Then came slow cooking the chicken and making the sauce, which combined the savory of chicken broth with the sweet of honey. I followed the advice of fellow bloggers and tempered the eggs, which worked perfectly.
It was my first time working with fillo dough. It wasn't as difficult as I imagined.
It's like flexible paper, but a little more fragile. It ended up a beautiful color.
I did use some foil on top to keep it from getting too brown. I decided to forget about taking the whole pie out of the container and putting it on a serving platter. I thought it would just ruin what had looked pretty so far.
Of course, I couldn't wait longer than five minutes to dive in, which meant the first piece was not so pretty on the plate, but others looked better. Funny how it never looks like the picture in the book:)
It tasted great! It had a nice complexity of flavor and texture. I loved the little bit of crunch from the sliced almonds. My hubby thought it was a little too sweet. I would agree that the sweetness sort of takes over. The saffron ended up being a background flavor instead of the main attraction. However, I really enjoyed making and tasting something so different than the usual pot pie comfort food. It's been a long time since I've had Moroccan food, so this was a nice departure. I would recommend the recipe for a dinner party or other special occasion, since it does take some time and work.
I probably wouldn't have tried this recipe on my own, which is why this cookalong is so fun. Next week...basque potato tortilla (hey, isn't this a French cookbook? C'est la vie!)