Grilled-Harissa Chicken Tagine

Paprika and chipotle chiles make a flavorful harissa sauce for this grilled chicken tagine.

Active Time:
1 hrs 35 mins
Total Time:
2 hrs 30 mins


  • 2 tablespoons sweet paprika

  • 1 chipotle in adobo, minced, plus 1 teaspoon adobo sauce

  • 2 garlic cloves, minced

  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin

  • 2 teaspoons ground caraway
  • 4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided, plus more for brushing

  • 4 skinless boneless chicken breast halves, lightly pounded

  • 2 mild green chiles, such as Italian frying peppers

  • 1/2 small red onion, thinly sliced

  • 1/2 pound grape tomatoes, halved

  • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro

  • 2 zucchini, halved lengthwise and sliced crosswise 1/4 inch thick

  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

  • 1/2 cup chicken stock or low-sodium broth

  • Chopped cilantro, goat yogurt, and pitas, for serving


  1. In a mortar, combine the paprika, chipotle, adobo sauce, garlic, cumin, caraway, and 2 tablespoons of olive oil and pound until a paste forms. Season with salt and pepper. Spread half of the harissa all over the chicken. Cover and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight.

  2. Light a grill or preheat a grill pan. Grill the chiles over moderately high heat until charred all over. Place the chiles in a bowl, cover with plastic wrap and let steam for 10 minutes. Peel, seed and stem the chiles, then cut them into 1/2-inch pieces.

  3. Transfer the chiles to a bowl and add the onion, tomatoes, cilantro, and 1 tablespoon of the harissa. Season the salad with salt and pepper and let stand for 10 minutes.

  4. Meanwhile, brush the chicken with oil; season with salt and pepper. Grill over moderate heat, turning, until cooked through, 9 minutes. Let cool.

  5. Shred the chicken breasts. In a large, deep skillet, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil. Add the zucchini and the remaining harissa, season with salt and pepper and cook over moderately high heat, stirring frequently, until slightly softened, about 5 minutes. Stir in the chicken and chile-tomato salad. Add the stock, season with salt and pepper and simmer just until heated through, about 3 minutes. Transfer the tagine to bowls, garnish with chopped cilantro and serve with goat yogurt and pitas.

Suggested pairing

Try a light-bodied, berry-rich Beaujolais.

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