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Creative and thoughtful use of spice is the key to Middle Eastern cuisine.
Rather than finding flavor in the richness of butter, spices are used to build robust flavor profiles that don’t leave diners feeling painfully full.
This marinade aims to harness the techniques of Moroccan cuisine by employing a combination of warm and peppery spices, along with the acidity of lemon and white wine.
For flavors that really pop, try using whole spices like we suggest for the garam masala mixture in our Tandoori Yogurt Marinade recipe (coming soon!)
Grind the whole cumin and coriander using a mortar and pestle, and finely mince or grate the ginger before combining with the remaining ingredients.
You’ll probably find that you actually need a little less of the whole and fresh items to bump up the taste factor of this flavorful soak. This is a good thing! Just be careful not to go overboard, and add seasonings to taste.
If you’re not in the mood for wings, try using this marinade to add fantastic flavor to chicken breasts, lamb, or fish.
Cooking by the Numbers…
Step 1 –Prepare Your Mise en Place
First, you want to get your ingredients ready.
Measure out the white wine, olive oil, and spices. You’re going to want to raid your spice rack for this one, as the recipe calls for quite a few delicious flavoring add-ins: black pepper, cumin, coriander, ginger, cayenne, and allspice.
You can also make your own Moroccan ras el hanout spice blend ahead of time, and store it for all kinds of recipes including this one!
Smash the garlic. I like to whack it with the flat side of a chef’s knife, and this will make removing the peels easier as well. Alternatively, you can mash your cloves up a bit using a mortar and pestle.
Grate the skin of the lemon with a microplane or zester, then squeeze it to get the juice. Pick out any seeds.
If you want to break down your whole chicken wings, get all the steps you need with our tutorial!
Step 2 – Make the Marinade
Combine the lemon juice and zest, white wine, olive oil, black pepper, ground cumin, ground coriander, ground ginger, cayenne pepper, allspice, and smashed garlic cloves in a large mixing bowl.
Set aside 1/4 cup of the marinade and reserve for later.
Step 3 – Marinate the Meat
Use your hands to massage the chicken wings with the rest of the marinade until they are well coated. If you wish to use this delicious marinade to prepare something other than wings, that’s fine too – the same method will work!
Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let the wings soak in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes, or up to 24 hours.
Step 4 – Bake
Preheat the oven to 400°F, and fit a baking tray with a metal rack.
Place the marinated wings on the prepared tray and bake for 40-45 minutes, or until cooked through. You can use a thermometer for this, or cut into a wing to check for doneness.
Once they’re cooked, switch on the broiler for a minute or two to crisp the up that skin.
If you’re using this marinade on a different type of protein, use a meat thermometer to check for doneness, and adjust cooking times accordingly. This also makes a fantastic soak for grilling.
Step 5 – Garnish and Serve
When the wings are done, brush a bit of the reserved marinade over them and garnish with fresh lemon slices.
Make a Moroccan-Style Feast Tonight
These Moroccan lemon wings are totally addictive. But best of all, they are so simple to make. I know you’ll be preparing them over and over again in your kitchen!
Definitely make these for game day – they’ll be a big hit with your guests. Try serving your Moroccan lemon wings alongside our tasty and nutrient-packed grilled salad, or check out some of our other suggestions for chicken wing marinades.
Give them a try today, and let us know what you think in the comments below!
Want more tasty finger food featuring chicken? Try our Crispy Baked Chicken Tenders, or get your hands dirty with even more flavored wing recipes:
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Photos Felicia Lim, © Ask the Experts, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. See our TOS for more details. Revised and expanded from a post originally written by Lorna Kring, with additional writing by Felicia Lim.
*Nutritional information derived from a database of known generic and branded foods and ingredients and was not compiled by a registered dietitian or submitted for lab testing. It should be viewed as an approximation.
About Kendall Vanderslice
Kendall’s love of food has taken her around the world. From baking muffins on a ship in West Africa and milking cows with Tanzanian Maasai, to hunting down the finest apfelstrudel in Austria, she continually seeks to understand the global impact of food. Kendall holds a BA in Anthropology from Wheaton College and an MLA in Gastronomy from Boston University, and has worked in the pastry departments of many of Boston’s top kitchens. Based in Somerville, Massachusetts, Kendall helps to run a small community supported bread bakery and writes about the intersection of food, faith, and culture on her personal blog, A Vanderslice of the Sweet Life.