Morrocan Spiced Squab

The squab is flavoured with what is called a ras el hanout – a homemade mix of blended spices that varies from region to region in Morocco. Paired with beet hummus and dukkah, a smear of flavour to access the delicate, tender meat of the squab.

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Squab - Squab is a young domestic Pigeon, typically 4 weeks old. The meat is widely described as “tasting like dark chicken meat”.

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  • 2 Fraser Valley Specialty Poultry squabs
  • 1/3 cup pistachios
  • 1/3 cup hazelnuts
  • 1 tsp caraway seeds
  • 1 tsp black sesame seeds
  • 1 tsp white sesame seeds
  • 1 tsp coriander seed
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • Ras el hanout spice
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped and diced into 1/2 pieces
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1 can chick peas, drained
  • 3 small cooked purple beets
  • 8 to 10 mint leaves
  • 1 healing tbsp tahini
  • Juice from 1 lemon
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 16 to 20 fresh Brussel sprouts
  • 1 tbsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tbsp cumin
  • 1 tbsp cinnamon
  • 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • Salt to taste

Preparation Instructions

  1. Lightly toast spices, nuts and seeds in a dry frying pan (ingredients 2 to 9).
  2. Place in a mortar and pestle, and grind.
  3. Separate the breasts and legs, French the leg, reserve and freeze the rest of the squab carcass for a rich and flavourful stock.
  4. Dry rub the ras el hanout onto both sides of squab breasts. Fry the breasts on medium high heat, with the skin side down for 2 minutes. Flip, and fry for 1.5 more minutes.
  5. Remove from pan and let rest. Slice each breast into two pieces and set aside.
  6. Pour the ground nuts and spices (Dukkah) onto a plate or cutting board. Rub Harrisa paste on the squab legs, roll in Dukkah to coat evenly.
  7. Roast the squab legs on a baking sheet in oven at 400 degrees for 5 minutes. Remove from oven and let rest.
  8. Sauté the onion with butter on low heat with the Harrisa paste, and 1 tsp of ras el hanout. Sauté the onion with butter on low heat with the Harrisa paste, and 1 tsp of ras el hanout.
  9. Spread this sauce on the bottom of each dish.
  10. In a good quality food processor, add chick peas, beets, mint, tahini, and lemon juice. Process until it starts to incorporate, then slowly add oil until it forms a nice consistency. Add salt to taste. Hummus can be made ahead of time.
  11. Combine the remaining spices and Dijon in a bowl, then whisk in oil until it forms a paste consistency.
  12. Trim the Brussel sprouts, and halve or quarter them. Coat in the spice paste to marinade for an hour.
  13. Place on a baking tray, and roast in the oven at 420 degrees for 20 minutes. Flip sprouts, and continue to cook for 15 more minutes until the sprouts are slightly charred and crispy.

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