Jaffa Orange-Ginger Chicken With Baharat

Submitted by Judy on Sun, 09/23/2007 - 7:12am.

from "The Foods of Israel Today" by Joan Nathan
as seen in The Orange County Register, 9-14-01

Salt to taste
1 tablespoon baharat, or to taste; see cook's notes
1 tablespoon ground ginger, or to taste
8 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
4 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 cup white wine
1/2 cup orange liqueur
1 cup chicken broth
4 tablespoons honey
1 1/2 cups orange juice
1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
2 tablespoons grated orange zest
2 tablespoons finely chopped crystallized ginger
2 oranges, peeled and sectioned

Cook's notes: Joan Nathan says baharat is a spice mixture that varies from cook to cook, but often includes paprika, (ground) chili, cumin, coriander, cinnamon, black pepper, allspice, nutmeg, cardamom, cloves and salt. "If you can't find the mixture at a Middle Eastern market, choose from you favorite of these spices instead, making sure you include pepper," Nathan writes.

If you prefer thicker sauce, after chicken has cooked, remove chicken from sauce and increase heat to high; boil until reduced to 3/4 to 1 cup. Return chicken to sauce and complete step 5.

1. Mix salt, baharat and ground ginger in small bowl. Sprinkle each side of chicken breasts with mixture.
2. Heat oil in heavy frying pan with cover and sauté chicken gently a few minutes on each side, just to brown outside. Remove chicken from pan and set aside.
3. Add wine, orange liqueur, chicken broth, honey, orange juice and fresh ginger to pan. Bring to boil and simmer about 15 minutes to reduce slightly, until light syrup has formed.
4. Return chicken to sauce in skillet and add orange zest and crystallized ginger; cover and simmer about 5 minutes. Turn breasts, and continue cooking another 5 minutes or until chicken is cooked through (see cook's notes).
5. Add orange sections and heat just until warm. Serve chicken with orange segments on bed of couscous or rice, with sauce drizzled on top.

Yield: 8 servings