This homely Persian chicken dish makes a great weeknight dinner. Fragrant with saffron and lemon, this recipe is a great quick braise. Serve with rice sprinkled with nuts.






Skill level

Average: 3.3 (54 votes)


  • ½ tsp ground saffron
  • 1 kg skinless chicken thighs
  • 1 large onion
  • ¼ cup vegetable oil
  • 60 g ghee
  • 1 tsp salt, or to taste
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


Dissolve the saffron in ½ cup of hot water, cover and put aside.

Wash the chicken pieces, put in a colander and drain.

Cut the onion into very small pieces (½ cm x ½ cm).

Heat the oil in a frying pan, fry the onion until golden and put aside.

Heat the ghee in a large non-stick frying pan. When hot, add the chicken pieces and cook over medium heat, turning to lightly colour all sides, for about 7 minutes.

When chicken pieces are fried sprinkle the fried onions, salt and lemon juice over the chicken. Then add the dissolved saffron. Rinse any leftover saffron in the cup with ½ cup of water and pour into the pan.

Put a lid on and simmer for about 15-20 minutes or until chicken is cooked through.

This dish can be served with plain rice or any mixed rice.