Moroccan Stew for a Stormy Week

Morroccan Stew

Moroccan Chicken with Eggplant, Tomatoes and Almonds

This version of a tangine, the Classic Moroccan stew is adapted from a Bon Appetit recipe from early 2004. It was originally shared by one of our students, Grace Evans who often times cooks for large groups of hungry skiers at the family’s ski club in North Conway. It has become a winter favorite of mine and between Grace and myself we have adapted the recipe to meet our tastes.

Considering we are expecting a winter storm this week and you probably have many of these ingredients in your home, I thought it might be a perfect time to share it. For those of you who came to Jan’s 5pm class on Sunday, this is what the delicious aroma was in the upstairs hallway!

6 Tbls olive oil, divided                                  3 cups sliced onions

6 large garlic cloves, minced                         1 Tbl Hungarian sweet paprika

1 ½ tsp. coarse kosher salt

Grace and I double all of the following spices, these are the suggested amounts:

1 tsp turmeric                                                 1 tsp ground coriander

1 tsp fennel seeds, ground                              1 tsp freshly ground black pepper

½ tsp group cumin                                          ½ tsp ground ginger


2 cups drained canned diced tomatoes…..I use a whole 28oz can

1 cup water or chicken broth (I like the broth and add a bit more than 1 cup)

3 Tbl (or more) fresh lemon juice

8 chicken thighs with bones, skinned (I like the boneless thighs)

8 chicken drumsticks, skinned (I double up on the thighs and omit these)


I lg eggplant, unpeeled, cut into 1” cubes (I use a small eggplant and cube 1 med zucchinis)                                                       1 Tbl. Fresh marjoram (I use 1tsp. dried)

½ cup slivered almonds                                  Chopped fresh cilantro

Heat 2 Tbl olive oil in heavy, large, wide skillet over med heat. Add onions and garlic, cover and cook for about 10 minutes until soft. Add paprika, salt, turmeric, coriander, fennel, pepper, cumin and ginger; stir 1 minute. Add tomatoes, 1 cup water/broth and 3 Tbl lemon juice; bring to a boil. Arrange the chicken in a single layer if possible in pot and spoon some sauce over. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to med-low, cover and simmer 15 minutes. Turn chicken over, cover and simmer until chicken is tender, about 20 minutes longer.

Meanwhile, preheat oven to 400. Brush large rimmed baking sheet with oil. Place eggplant and zuchinni if using and 4 remaining Tbl olive oil in a large bowl; toss to coat. Spread veggies out on sheet and bake until soft and brown, stirring occasionally, about 25 minutes.

Stir eggplant and marjoram into chicken. Simmer uncovered 10 minutes to heat through and blend flavors. Season stew to taste with more lemon juice if desired, and salt and pepper. Transfer to large shallow bowl and sprinkle with chopped cilantro and almonds.

Enjoy! Makes enough to serve 8-10 hungry souls!









Jen Willms: From Sea to Sea


Hailing from Canada, Jen Willms took the Canadian motto to heart. A Mari Usque ad Mare meaning “from sea to sea” is pretty much how Jen chased her yoga dreams.

A dancer, Jen came to yoga by way of Pilates and Barre classes at Balance Studio. It was there that she discovered yoga. A globetrotter, Jen completed her 200-hour yoga training with Sarah Powers in Costa Rica. Recently she obtained her RYT 500, a yoga learning experience that took her to exotic places like Thailand and Bali, the mythically beautiful Wales, the west coast cities of Santa Cruz and Santa Monica, the scenic NY Catskills and the New England beauty of colonial Barre, MA.unknown

Jen, a self-professed lover of organization and order said she learns something about her students and herself whenever she teaches yoga. “I love that every time I walk into the studio, I don’t know who will be there or what will unfold”, she said. Although she always has a plan, how it plays out is influenced by how things naturally unfold in that particular moment. This is the magic of yoga and it has taught Jen to trust herself knowing that she is guided by this five thousand year old enlightening process.

Jen’s favorite pose is Half Moon because it’s challenging and freeing and it demands that you trust yourself while the yin pose butterfly allows Jen to be contemplative, reflective, and peaceful.2L1A6184-2cropsmall

Jen and her husband Rob moved from Canada to Cohasset 25 years ago. They live with their 18-year old son Max, a freshman in college in Canada and their 16-year old son Bayden who is a junior at Tabor Academy. She credits her yellow lab Biscuit with teaching her the joy of walking, which they do together daily, either solo or accompanied by family or friends. Jen reads every day and enjoys being outdoors gardening or paddle boarding along Cohasset’s beautiful coast (which would be difficult in her homeland since Canada has the world’s longest coastline.)

Jen can be found teaching Yin on Friday mornings @ 8 am, Yin & Meditation on Wednesday evenings @ 7:15 pm and Workshops such as Yoga for Anxiety and Depression on April 2nd 2017

Amy Di Lillo: The Diviner


A woman of the world, Michigan raised Amy DiLillo’s journey to Massachusetts came by way of Texas and the exotic countries of Japan, Singapore and Thailand.

Amy’s journey with yoga began 20 years ago.  Teaching for over 15 years, Amy loves how yoga quietly shifts mood, posture, breath and the energy of her students and herself.  Her favorite pose is Eagle because it makes her feel grounded, yet ready to take flight.

IMG_2054cleansmallAfter many years of dedication to her yoga, Amy will achieve a substantial milestone this February when she completes her RYT 500.  This education provides significant insight into the therapeutic yoga Amy delivers in class.  Amy is drawn to energy practices and that might not be a coincidence.  Her grandfather was a Michigan farmer and practicing water diviner (aka: water witch!)  Using a fresh Y shaped branch clasped in his hands, Amy’s hands on the branch under his, they would walk the family acreage looking for the right spot to dig a well.   She recalls feeling the branch gently vibrate and tilt down toward the earth revealing water lines deep within. He told her she had the “power”!

Amy lives in Cohasset with her husband Tom, their 16-year old son Dimitri and two fabulous felines.  G a feral feline who was born under their house in TX has moved with them to MI and now MA.  Siam, a well-fed feline rescue cat appeared on their MI doorstep and has not missed a meal since.IMG_3451bssmall

In her spare time Amy loves to walk (or snow shoe) at the many gorgeous beaches and parks in the area.  In addition to being a yoga teacher, she is corporate cross-cultural trainer who works with either American executives about to live abroad or foreigners moving to the US.  Passionate about many things, Amy strives to support LGBT Equality, Civil and Women’s Rights.  “It’s all yoga, really…, she says.  “it’s about being present and uniting.”

Amy can be found teaching 8 am Yin Yoga on Mondays and Fridays. Thursday Evenings @6:15 for Restorative Yoga & Yoga Nidra. She is often also offering workshops using essential oils as well as Restorative and Nidra workshops.


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