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    You are in: Home / Recipes / Tajine Malsouka -- Tunisian Chicken 'tagine' Phyllo Pie Recipe
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    Tajine Malsouka -- Tunisian Chicken 'tagine' Phyllo Pie

    Total Time:

    Prep Time:

    Cook Time:

    2 hrs 15 mins

    1 hrs

    1 hrs 15 mins

    Um Safia's Note:

    When most people think of a tagine, they think of a thick, saucy, often fruity dish. In Tunisia though, that couldn't be further from the truth. This Tunisian masterpiece is a lot of work but is perfect for dinner parties & special occasions. It is a little like Moroccan Pastilla but without all the icing sugar! For greatest effect, serve this warm on a rimless cake stand!

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    Units: US | Metric

    • 1 kg chicken thigh (on the bone with skin)
    • 3 medium brown onions, peeled & diced
    • 1 -2 teaspoon crushed saffron threads mixed with a little water (or 1/2 tsp fresh ground nutmeg)
    • 200 -250 ml water
    • 12 large rounds phyllo pastry (10-inchx12-incheach in diameter)
    • 100 g gruyere cheese, grated (or other hard cheese)
    • 4 large eggs, beaten
    • salt & ground black pepper
    • 250 g ricotta cheese, thinly sliced
    • 2 egg yolks mixed with 1-2 tsp vegetable oil to glaze
    • vegetable oil, for frying & for brushing the pastry layers & dish


    1. 1
      In a frying pan, fry the onion in a little of the vegetable oil for a few minutes until it is softened. Add the chicken & the water, cover then cook for 45 minutes in a medium heat or until the chicken is cooken through, turning the thighs from time to time.
    2. 2
      Preheat oven to 190c / 375f/ GM5.
    3. 3
      Discard the chicken skin, remove the meat from the bones & place the pieces in a bowl.
    4. 4
      Pour the saffron or ground nutmeg paste over the chicken, then stir in the grated cheese and 2-3 tbsp of water to make an 'unctous mixture'. Stir in the beaten eggs & season with the salt & pepper to taste.
    5. 5
      Generously oil an ovenproof pie or quiche dish about the same zie as the rounds of phyllo. Overlap 5 sheets so that at least 1/3 of the phyllo is allowed to hang over the sides of the dish, remembering to lightly brush each sheet with the vegetable oil. Place a final 6th piece of phyllo over the top of the others - this one should be central so that it reinforces the base a little.
    6. 6
      Pour in most of the chicken mixture, followed by a layer of sliced ricotta then a final layer of the chicken.
    7. 7
      Fold the overhanging phyllo pastry over the top so that is wrapped but not too tight. Stick the edges together using a pastry brush & the glaze. Place another sheet of phyllo on top, tucking the edges into the dish, followed by 4 more sheets of phyllo, being sure to brush them with the glaze as you go. Finish by brushing more g;ase on the top.
    8. 8
      Place the tagine on a low shelf in the oven for around 20-25 minutes. The pastry should be crisp & deep golden when the dish is ready.
    9. 9
      Serve hot, on a flat dish & cut into slices as you would a cake.

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    Nutritional Facts for Tajine Malsouka -- Tunisian Chicken 'tagine' Phyllo Pie

    Serving Size: 1 (260 g)

    Servings Per Recipe: 6

    Amount Per Serving
    % Daily Value
    Calories 565.1
    Calories from Fat 356
    Total Fat 39.5 g
    Saturated Fat 14.9 g
    Cholesterol 320.5 mg
    Sodium 266.6 mg
    Total Carbohydrate 7.1 g
    Dietary Fiber 0.7 g
    Sugars 2.7 g
    Protein 43.1 g

    The following items or measurements are not included:

    phyllo pastry


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