The flavors of this dish were swimming around in my mind for a few days. Finally, I took the leap and made it. I used my pressure cooker to do the Persian Saffron Rice and it turned out fabulously. There was plenty left over for some more meals. The savory, sweet, sour and crunchy elements in this dish really sang to me. I think that they will to you.
1 pound of chicken thighs, skin removed.
1 cup of Olive Oil
3 tablespoons hot smoked paprika
5 tablespoons Vik’s Garlic Fix (or your favorite garlic salt blend)
I sweet onion minced
4 garlic cloves minced
1 Tbs cinnamon
1 Tbs ground cardamon
1/4 cup golden raisins, plumped in hot water and strained
2 TBS corn starch dissolved in 3 TBS water
1/2 cup of pomegranate syrup or molasses
1/2 cup maple syrup
Zest and juice of one lemon
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup pistachios roughly chopped and toasted
fresh pomegranate arils and cilantro for garnish
Sprinkle the chicken with the garlic salt and the smoked paprika. Allow to sit for at least 1 hour or up to 12 hours.
Add the oil to a saute pan and brown each of the chicken pieces. Place into an oven proof dish while browning the other pieces then put into a 300 degree oven.
Remove all but 3 TBS of the oil from the pan.
For the sauce saute the onion and garlic in olive oil.
Add the pomegranate molasses, raisins, the lemon juice, maple syrup and zest and juice of the lemon, the water, the cardamom, cinnamon and the cornstarch slurry. bring to a high simmer and whisk while the liquid thickens.
Return the chicken to the pan, including juices and bring back to a full simmer. Continue to cook for about 30 minutes or until the chicken is tender. While simmering, continue to spoon the sauce over the chicken.
To serve, plate with saffron rice and top with the pistachios, cilantro and pomegranates