It’s been awhile since we’ve featured one of our shove-it-in-the-oven dishes. Here’s the latest. It’s based on the chicken tagine we ran on Three Many Cooks last year. The advantages of this recipe—you don’t need a tagine, and you need very little time. After getting the apricots simmering, you know the drill. Just toss everything except the cilantro into the roasting pan. After thirty minutes in the oven, the chicken tagine is ready. Stir in apricots and cilantro, and serve the stew on a bed of couscous or another of your favorite grains for a beautiful one-dish supper that’s also nice enough to serve to company.

Maggy was out for dinner last Friday, and I cooked this chicken tagine for her. Five days later she e-mails, “so, I have been craving that tagine since you made it last weekend!!”

Based on her endorsement, I think this recipe has a bright future.

Shove-it-in-the-Oven Chicken Tagine with Apricots and Almonds
Serves 8

If you can’t find marcona almonds, simply fry 1/2 cup slivered almonds in 1/4 cup oil in a small skillet over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until golden brown, about 2 minutes.

3 tablespoons honey
2 2-inch pieces cinnamon stick
3/4 cup dried Turkish apricots, separated into halves
2 teaspoons each: ground cinnamon and ginger
1 teaspoon each: turmeric and ground black pepper
3 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs, halved
1 large onion, quartered and sliced 1/4 inch thick
4 large carrots
6 large garlic cloves, sliced
1/4 cup olive oil
Salt
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves
1/2 cup marcona almonds, chopped

Bring honey, 1 1/2 cups water, cinnamon sticks, and apricots to a boil over medium-high heat in a medium heavy-bottomed saucepan. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, uncovered, until apricots are tender and liquid is reduced to a glaze, about 20 minutes; discard cinnamon sticks.

Meanwhile, mix cinnamon, ginger, turmeric, and pepper in a small bowl.

Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position and heat oven to 425 degrees. Scatter chicken, onions, carrots, garlic, spice mix, olive oil and a sprinkling of salt in a large roasting pan; toss to coat well. Place roasting pan in oven and cook until chicken is fully cooked and carrots are tender, about 30 minutes. Remove pan from oven, stirring in cilantro, apricots, and a little water if dish needs moistening. Serve chicken on a bed of couscous or other grains of choice, sprinkling with almonds.