FESENJAN ft SAFFRON RICE


VALENTINES SPECIAL

One of my fave Persian dishes and brown food at its finest! Melt in the mouth chicken that's been slow cooked in an outrageous walnut and pomegranate sauce (Veggies I got you see TIP below). It's a rich balance between savoury and sweet, boyy if this don’t impress your partner I don’t know what will.


TIP: If your veggie you can sub out the chicken with cauliflower but the steps will be a tad different. Cut up and roast a whole cauli in a lil olive oil, salt and extra turmeric, get some nice colour on it. Reduce the sauce for 1hr before adding the roasted cauli for a final 10min to absorb the flavour.


Recipe Serves 2

Total Cook Time: 1hr 45


Ingredients:

2 chicken legs or 4 thighs bone in skin removed

1 onion finely sliced

1/2 tsp ground turmeric

1/4tsp ground cinnamon

150g walnuts

1/2 cup pomegranate molasses

2 cup chicken stock

1tsp olive oil

1tsp butter

Salt and pepper


Saffron rice:

1 cup basmati rice

1 1/2 cups chicken stock

Large pinch of saffron

1tbsp butter


Garnish:

Coriander or parsley

Pomegranate seeds


Method:

Roast the walnuts at 180C for 8-10 min until deep brown, allow to cool before blitzing to a rough powdery paste. Set aside.


In a saucepan brown off the chicken in the butter and olive oil for around 8 mins until golden on each side but not cooked through. Remove the chicken from the pan and add in the sliced onion, fry for a good 5-10 minutes until caramelised.


Add the ground walnuts to the pan along with the spices and fry for a few minutes before adding the stock and molasses. Bring to the boil then reduce to simmer for 15 minutes. Add the browned chicken to the sauce and cover with a lid to to continue cooking on low for 1 hour (occasionally stirring to prevent sticking). The chicken should be super tender and just about falling off the bone. Taste and season to your liking with salt and pepper.


15 min before the chicken is done make your rice. In a saucepan toast the rice for 4mins until parts start to brown, then add the butter and saffron mix to combine then add in the stock and give it a good stir. Bring to the boil then reduce the heat to simmer with the lid on for 8-10 minutes, give the pan a shake in between to stop it sticking to the bottom of the pan. Remove the pan from the heat and keep the lid on for around 4 mins to allow the rice to steam and fluff up further. This is my lil secret to perfect rice 👌🏽


Serve the rice and chicken with a garnish of pomegranate seeds and a flourish of chopped coriander or parsley.