Djej Mechoui (Grilled Chicken with Moroccan Spices)

  • Serves

    serves 4


In Morocco, cooks rub chicken (poussins, about 1 lb. each, are best) with an aromatic paste, like the one in this recipe, before grilling. It's a simple but wonderful way to add flavor.


  • 3 scallions, white ends only, chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, peeled
  • 2 tbsp. fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 2 tbsp. fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 12 tsp. sweet paprika
  • 1 pinch hot paprika
  • 1 12 cups ground cumin
  • 14 cup butter, soft
  • 4 poussins or 2 small chickens


Step 1

Crush the scallions, garlic, cilantro, parsley, salt, sweet paprika, hot paprika, and cumin with a mortar and pestle. Blend in butter.

Step 2

Wash poussins or chickens; split them down the back and flatten; dry well; and rub inside and out with butter paste. Let stand at least 1 hour.

Step 3

Preheat grill, then cook chicken skin side up. Turn after 2 minutes and baste with any extra paste. Continue to turn and baste until skin is crisp and flesh is firm.