Moroccan chicken stew with couscous

I like to serve this when entertaining -- for a buffet -- because it tastes terrific, can be prepared in advance and is easily eaten with a fork, so no knives are needed. Brown or white rice can be served instead of couscous. Turnip can be used as well as or instead of sweet potatoes.


  • 1 1/4 lb. boneless skinless chicken, cubed 625 g
  • 3 onions, thinly sliced
  • 2 cups (500 ml) water
  • 1 tbsp (15 ml) minced gingerroot
  • 1 tsp (5 ml) each turmeric, cinnamon and granulated sugar 
  • 1/2 tsp (2 ml) saffron (optional)
  • 1 sweet potato, peeled and cubed
  • 4 carrots, cut in chunks 4
  • 1 cup canned or cooked chickpeas, drained and rinsed 250 mL
  • 1/4 cup (50 ml) dried currants
  • 2 tbsp (25 ml) fresh lemon juice
  • 1 small zucchini (6 oz/170 g), cut in chunks
  • 3 tbsp (50 ml) each chopped fresh parsley and coriander (cilantro) 
  • 1/4 tsp (1 ml) or less salt and freshly ground pepper 
  • 1 1/2 cups (375 ml) couscous

In a nonstick skillet or saucepan, cook chicken over high heat until brown on all sides and no longer pink inside, about 5 minutes; remove chicken to plate and set aside. Reduce heat to medium and add onions; cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes or until softened.

Add water, gingerroot, turmeric, cinnamon, sugar and saffron (if using); bring to simmer. Add sweet potato and carrots; cover and simmer for 20 minutes. Stir in chickpeas, currants and lemon juice. Add zucchini and chicken; cover and simmer for 10 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Add parsley and coriander; season with salt and pepper.

Cook couscous according to package directions or see page 114. Serve with stew.

**Makes six servings

**Make ahead: Cover and refrigerate cooked chicken and chickpea mixture for up to 2 days. Bring to simmer before adding zucchini and chicken and continuing with recipe.

**Per serving (including couscous): 422 calories, 30 g protein, 4 g total fat, 1 g saturated fat, 62 mg cholesterol, 66 g carbohydrates, 7 g fibre, 329 mg sodium, 815 mg potassium

Excerpted from Lighthearted at Home. Copyright © 2010 by Anne Lindsay and Associates. Excerpted with permission of the publisher John Wiley & Sons Canada Ltd.

Applesauce cranberry cake

Full of flavor, this delicious moist cake looks attractive when made in a Bundt or tube pan. It's easy to make and keeps well. Serve with fresh fruit desserts, poached pears or sorbets.

  • 1 3/4 (425 mL) cups granulated sugar
  • 1/4 (50 ml) cup soft margarine, at room temperature 
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup (125 ml) low-fat plain yogurt 
  • 2 cups (500 ml) applesauce
  • 1 tsp (5 ml) pure vanilla extract
  • Grated rind of one medium orange
  • 1 1/2 (375 ml) cups all-purpose flour 
  • 1 1/4 (300 ml) cups whole-wheat flour
  • 1 cup (250 ml) dried cranberries or raisins
  • 1/4 cup (50 ml) wheat bran
  • 4 tsp (20 ml) cinnamon
  • 2 tsp (10 ml) baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp (2 ml) ground nutmeg


Lightly grease and flour a 10-inch (25 cm) Bundt pan.

In mixing bowl, beat sugar with margarine until well mixed. Beat in egg until light in colour. Beat in yogurt until mixed. Beat in applesauce, vanilla and orange rind.

In separate bowl, combine all-purpose and whole-wheat flours, cranberries, bran, cinnamon, baking soda and nutmeg; stir to mix. Pour over applesauce mixture and stir just until combined.

Pour into prepared pan and bake in 325°F (160°C) oven for 60 to 70 minutes or until toothpick inserted in centre comes out clean. Let cool in pan on rack for 20 minutes, then turn out onto rack and let cool completely.

**Makes 24 small slices

**Make ahead: Wrap well and refrigerate for up to 4 days or freeze for up to 1 month.

**Variations: Top with low-fat Lemon Icing (p. 395) or Orange Icing (p. 395). Applesauce Cranberry Cake with either icing adds 27 calories per serving.

**Per slice: 159 calories, 2 g protein, 3 g total fat, 0 g saturated fat, 8 mg cholesterol, 33 g carbohydrate, 2 g fibre, 138 mg sodium, 81 mg potassium

Excerpted from Lighthearted at Home. Copyright © 2010 by Anne Lindsay and Associates. Excerpted with permission of the publisher John Wiley & Sons Canada Ltd.

Arugula and Boston lettuce salad with walnut oil vinaigrette

A simple salad is often the best, especially if the dressing uses a flavourful oil, such as walnut or hazelnut. Use any combination of fresh greens in season. Because it is simple, this salad complements a variety of dishes, making it a good buffet offering.


  • 1 head Boston or leaf lettuce 1
  • Half bunch arugula, escarole or watercress Half
  • 1 small head radicchio 1

Walnut Oil Vinaigrette

  • 2 tbsp walnut oil 25 mL
  • 2 tbsp fresh lemon juice or rice vinegar 25 mL
  • 1 tbsp water 15 mL
  • 1/4 tsp or less salt and freshly ground pepper 1 mL or less


Separate leaves of lettuce, arugula and radicchio; wash and dry well. Tear bite-size pieces into salad bowl.

Walnut Oil Vinaigrette: In small dish, combine oil, lemon juice, water, and salt and pepper; mix well. Pour over salad and toss to mix.

**Makes 8 servings

**Note: Nut oils add a subtle, delicious note to salads. Store in the refrigerator.


Roasted Red Pepper and Chèvre

Divide salad among 8 individual plates. Cut 2 roasted red peppers in this strips. Dice 4 oz (125g) chèvre (soft goat cheese). Top each individual salad with red pepper strips and chèvre.

**Per serving: 41 calories, 1 g protein, 4 g total fat, 0 g saturated fat, 0 mg cholesterol, 2 g carbohydrate, 1 g fibre, 81 mg sodium, 149 mg potassium

Excerpted from Lighthearted at Home. Copyright © 2010 by Anne Lindsay and Associates. Excerpted with permission of the publisher John Wiley & Sons Canada Ltd.