Recipe: Under $25: Chicken Tagine with Parsnips & Artichokes
Many of you have expressed that eating Paleo can be difficult and frustrating due to increased weekly shopping costs. I agree that eating wholesome, fresh food and grass-fed, free-range meat is definitely a more expensive way to optimal health but with a little imagination and resourcefulness it is possible to avoid bankruptcy while living the Paleo lifestyle. I regularly feature meals recipes for 3-4 people, under $25 total cost. That’s about $6-7 per person, about the same as the Big Mac meal at McDonalds (don’t ask me how I know it).
This ‘under $25 meal’ is a gorgeous Moroccan inspired chicken tagine or tajine made with six free-range Lilydale drumsticks ($5), parsnips ($1-2), carrots ($.3), artichokes ($3-4) and a whole lot of tasty spices and flavour components adding up to a total of around $20-22. This recipe, and cost calculations, take into account that you already have some of the spices and the ones you buy for this meal specifically will be used up for other dishes. All costs are in Australian dollars and based on Sydney prices – this means that it might work out to be even cheaper in other areas.
Cooking notes: You can use other chicken parts like wings and thighs, which are also quite cheap. I used an actual tagine dish to cook this stew like meal, but any deep frying pan with a lead will do just fine. Parsnips and carrots can be replaced with sweet potatoes, green beans, cauliflower, broccoli or whatever else is in season in your area. Eating seasonally is one way to cut down the cost of your groceries.
- 6 chicken drumsticks
- 1 tsp turmeric powder
- 2 garlic cloves, finely grated or chopped
- 1 tsp sea salt
- A pinch of black pepper
- 1/2 lemon juice
- 2 tbs olive oil
- 1 medium brown onion, sliced
- 1 large parsnip, peeled and cut into thick strips
- 1 large carrot, peeled and cut into thick strips
- 2 garlic cloves, sliced
- 2 tbsp dried black currants or raisins
- 1 jar or can of artichoke hearts, rinsed
- 4-5 cherry tomatoes, halved
- 1 tsp turmeric
- 2 cups reduced salt chicken stock
- 2/3 tsp coriander seeds powder or grounded coriander seeds
- A pinch of chili flakes or small red chill chopped
- A pinch of black pepper
- Fresh coriander for garnish
- 2-3 tsp ghee
- Coat chicken in turmeric, garlic, lemon juice, black pepper and olive oil. Marinate for 5-10 minutes.
- Heat 2 teaspoons of ghee in a frying pan or directly in the tagine dish to high. Fry chicken drumsticks for 3.5 minutes on each side. Remove to a plate.
- Add onion and sauté for 2 minutes. Add turmeric, coriander seeds powder and sliced garlic. Sauté for another minute letting the spices to toast and release their aromas. Add chicken stock and combine.
- Add parsnip, carrots and dried black currants, layer chicken drumsticks on top (see pic above). Cook with the lid on for 5-6 minutes. Turn chicken over and cook for another 5 minutes. Mix in with the parsnip and carrots, letting drumsticks sink to the bottom. Add cherry tomatoes and artichoke hearts on top. Cover with a lid and cook for a further 10 minutes on medium/low heat.
- Take the lead off, remove chicken and bring the sauce with vegetable to boil. Let it bubble for a few minutes, stirring occasionally. This will thicken the sauce. Turn the heat down and add chicken drumsticks back in. Stir and turn the heat off. Sprinkle with fresh of coriander, a squiz of lemon and a little sprinkle of sea salt.
Preparation time: 10-15 minutes
Cooking time: 35-40 minutes
Number of servings: 3
If you like this, check out my Eat Drink Paleo Cookbook for more delicious paleo recipes, introduction to paleo nutrition and philosophy and a handy inventory of foods to focus on and avoid. Available on my website and on Amazon.com.