Poussin Recipe with Preserved Lemons and Tabbouleh

Preserved lemon poussin with tabbouleh and saffron yogurt

  • serves 2
  • Easy

Check out this poussin recipe with preserved lemons. This easy dish makes a great alternative to any weekend roast recipe. Serve with freshly chopped tabbouleh salad and a smooth saffron yogurt



  • preserved lemons 4, flesh and pips removed and discarded
  • flat leaf parsley a small bunch, stalks finely chopped, leaves reserved for the tabbouleh
  • rose or regular harissa 1 tbsp
  • olive oil 3 tbsp
  • poussins 2
  • onions 2, chopped
  • ginger a thumb-sized piece, chopped
  • garlic 3 cloves, chopped
  • ground turmeric 1 tsp
  • ground cumin 2 tsp
  • ground coriander 2 tsp
  • ground cinnamon 1 tsp 
  • chopped tomatoes ½ x 400g tin
  • chicken stock 200ml
  • dried apricots a handful
  • green olives a handful


  • bulgar wheat 60g
  • extra-virgin olive oil 2 tbsp
  • lemon 1, juiced
  • red onion ½, finely chopped
  • tomato 1, finely chopped
  • red pepper ½, finely chopped
  • coriander a small bunch, chopped
  • hazelnuts 50g, toasted and chopped
  • flaked almonds 25g, toasted


  • saffron 1 pinch
  • natural yogurt 100g
  • lemon ½, juiced


  • Step 1

    To make the marinade, put 2 of the preserved lemon rinds into a food processor with the parsley stalks, harissa and 2 tbsp of olive oil, whizz until smooth and then season. Put the poussins into a bowl and pour over the marinade. Rub really well into the birds, both inside and out, and marinate for at least 4 hours or preferably overnight.

  • Step 2

    Use the same blender (you won’t need to wash it) to blitz the onions, ginger and garlic with 1 tbsp of water to a purée. Cover and chill until needed.

  • Step 3

    Heat the oven to 180C/fan 160C/gas 4. Heat the remaining olive oil in a large casserole. Scrape off and keep as much of the marinade from the poussin as possible then brown the birds really well until deep golden all over. Remove onto a plate and  tip the onion purée and left-over marinade into the casserole. Add a large pinch of salt and cook gently for 10 minutes until starting to caramelise. Finely slice the remaining two preserved lemon rinds and add to the pan along with the spices. Cook gently for 5 minutes. Tip in the chopped tomatoes and chicken stock, season and bring to the boil.

  • Step 4

    Add in the apricots and olives, and sit the poussins on top, adding any juices from the plate. Cook in the oven for 50 minutes, or until the birds are cooked through.

  • Step 5

    Cook the bulgar wheat in a large pan of boiling water for 15 minutes or until tender. Drain really well, tip into a large bowl and toss with the extra-virgin olive oil, lemon juice and seasoning. Stir through the red onion, tomato, pepper, coriander and parsley leaves. Just before serving, stir through 1/2 the nuts, tip into a serving bowl and sprinkle with the remaining nuts.

  • Step 6

    Put the saffron into a bowl and pour over 2 tbsp of boiling water. Leave to infuse until the water is room temperature. Put the yogurt in a separate bowl, season and add the lemon juice. Add the saffron water to the yogurt – it should be a bright orangey yellow and a drizzle-able consistency.

  • Step 7

    Serve the poussins and sauce alongside the tabbouleh and drizzle generously with the saffron dressing.

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Nutritional Information

  • Kcals 1335
  • Fat 88.3g
  • Saturates 15.9g
  • Carbs 56.7g
  • Sugars 29.1g
  • Fibre 19.7g
  • Protein 68.5g
  • Salt 1.2g