Every week, Yahoo Food spotlights a cookbook that stands out from the rest. This week’s cookbook is Paleo Perfected: A Revolution in Eating Well with 150 Kitchen-Tested Recipes by the editors at America’s Test Kitchen (America’s Test Kitchen). Read more about Yahoo Food’s Cookbook of the Week here.
Photograph by Keller + Keller
Slow-Cooker Moroccan Fish Tagine
Serves 4 to 6
Why This Recipe Works: Traditional Moroccan tagines are slow-cooked stews that get their name from the earthenware pots in which they are cooked. The domed lids of tagine pots trap condensed moisture and return it to the pot as the dish simmers, gently steaming the contents in their own flavorful juices as they slowly intensify over time. Tagine recipes are a great fit for modern slow cookers, which similarly collect and reincorporate savory moisture while gently simmering their contents. For our fish tagine, we built the base of our complex, aromatic broth using fennel, onion, garlic, tomatoes, and warm spices, and we added subtle richness and depth with our Paleo Chicken Broth. We simmered this mixture until the broth was deeply flavorful and the fennel tender. We added the cod in the last 30 minutes to allow it to steam gently in the broth without overcooking. Chopped kalamata olives and sweet raisins added texture and lent a bright and tangy finish to our tagine. Halibut or haddock are good substitutes for the cod. You will need a 4- to 7-quart slow cooker for this recipe. Cayenne pepper gives this dish a spicy kick; for a milder dish, cut back to 1/8 teaspoon.
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 fennel bulbs, 1/4 cup fronds minced, stalks discarded, bulbs halved, cored, and sliced 1/4 inch thick
1 onion, halved and sliced thin
Kosher salt and pepper
3 tablespoons tomato paste
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 teaspoons garam masala
1 ½ teaspoons paprika
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
2 cups Paleo Chicken Broth (see below)
2 tomatoes, cored and chopped
2 (2-inch) strips lemon zest
½ cup pitted kalamata olives, chopped coarse
¼ cup raisins
1 ½ pounds skinless cod fillets, 1 inch thick, cut into 2-inch pieces
2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
Heat 3 tablespoons oil in 12-inch skillet over medium heat until shimmering. Add sliced fennel, onion, and 1 teaspoon salt and cook until softened and lightly browned, 8 to 10 minutes. Stir in tomato paste, garlic, garam masala, paprika, and cayenne and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Stir in broth, scraping up any browned bits; transfer to slow cooker.
Stir in tomatoes and lemon zest. Cover and cook until flavors meld, 4 to 6 hours on low or 3 to 5 hours on high.
Discard lemon zest. Stir in olives and raisins, then season cod with salt and pepper and nestle into slow cooker. Cover and cook on high until cod flakes apart when gently prodded with paring knife and registers 140 degrees, 20 to 30 minutes.
Season with salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle individual portions with parsley and fennel fronds and drizzle with remaining oil before serving.
Paleo Chicken Broth
Makes about 8 cups
Why This Recipe Works: This rich and well-rounded chicken broth is perfect for use across a wide range of paleo recipes-—as a base for soups, stews, and sauces; as a cooking medium; and even on its own. Many recipes for chicken stock call for simmering a whole chicken, but we found that cutting the chicken into pieces yielded more flavor by providing more surface area for browning. We tested a variety of vegetables to round out our broth and found that onion enhanced the chicken flavor while also imparting a gentle sweetness. Chopping and then sautéing the onion in the pot after browning the chicken helped concentrate the onion’s flavor. We simmered pots of broth from 1 to 24 hours, and tasters agreed that at 4 hours, our broth had the best flavor—a deep, well-rounded chicken base with a slightly aromatic sweetness. After 8 hours, the broth began to taste slightly metallic, and further cooking gave way to bitter, harsh, and even burnt tones. If using a slow cooker, you will need one that holds 51/2 to 7 quarts. You can reserve the separated chicken fat in step 4 and substitute it in savory recipes where olive oil, coconut oil, or ghee are called for.
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
3 pounds whole chicken legs, backs, and/or wings, hacked into 2-inch pieces
1 onion, chopped
8 cups water
3 bay leaves
Heat oil in Dutch oven over medium-high heat until just smoking. Pat chicken dry with paper towels. Brown half of chicken, about 5 minutes; transfer to large bowl. Repeat with remaining chicken; transfer to bowl.
Add onion to fat left in pot and cook over medium heat until softened, about 5 minutes. Stir in 2 cups water, bay leaves, and 1 teaspoon salt, scraping up any browned bits.
For the stovetop: Stir remaining 6 cups water into pot, then return browned chicken and any accumulated juices and bring to simmer. Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer gently until broth is rich and flavorful, about 4 hours.
For the slow cooker: Transfer browned chicken and any accumulated juices and onion mixture to slow cooker. Stir in remaining 6 cups water. Cover and cook until broth is rich and flavorful, about 4 hours on low.
Remove large bones from pot, then strain broth through fine-mesh strainer into large container; discard solids. Let broth settle for 5 to 10 minutes, then defat using wide, shallow spoon or fat separator. (Cooled broth can be refrigerated for up to 4 days or frozen for up to 1 month.)
Reprinted with permission from Paleo Perfected: A Revolution in Eating Well with 150 Kitchen-Tested Recipes by the editors at America’s Test Kitchen (America’s Test Kitchen).
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