Roasted Chicken with Pomegranate Sauce


Keeping with more Sephardic recipes for my seder, the recipe that I found for our meat dish was with Moroccan spices and a Persian inspired sauce. I would make this any day of the week, it was delicious and so easy. As I have mentioned in past posts, I love pomegranates, and the sauce for the glaze is a pomegranate syrup which makes the chicken deliciously sweet and adds a great balance to the spices rubbed into the chicken. 

spiced chicken pieces  browning

I made a number of adjustments to this recipe, instead of buying the lovely little chickens that were recommended, I used the random chicken pieces that were in my freezer waiting to be cooked, ending up with three legs, two thighs and a leg and thigh that had not been cut up. Strangely formed chicken. It was a lot of chicken for two people, but it was so good that we ate at all. 

The second adjustment that I made was by substituting pistachios for the walnuts, this kept with the Persian inspiration and added a little bit of color, it is also a nut that my husband can eat. They didn’t really add much to the flavor of the dish and most of them weren’t eaten, they had become a bit mushy in the syrup. The next time I make this, I may add crumbled pistachios when serving the dish, which would keep the color and give the benefits of the flavor, which they didn’t do when they were cooked with the sauce. I could also just skip the pistachios and sprinkle the chicken with pomegranate seeds before serving. 

chicken in pomegranate syrup and pistachios

Roasted Chicken with Pomegranate Sauce adapted from

For sauce:

  • 1 cup bottled pomegranate juice
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup water

For chicken:

  • 1 chicken cut into pieces
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon crumbled saffron threads
  • 3/4 cup pistachios
  • 2 tablespoons or more vegetable oil, for frying

roasted chicken

In small saucepan over moderately high heat, whisk together 1 cup water, pomegranate juice, and sugar. Bring to boil and cook, uncovered, until thick and syrupy, about 15 to 20 minutes.

Preheat oven to 375°F.

Rinse chicken pieces and pat dry. In small bowl, whisk together salt, cumin, turmeric, pepper, and saffron. Sprinkle poussins with spice mixture; press to adhere.

Set large roasting pan on stove top, straddling two burners. Add 2 tablespoons vegetable oil and heat over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking. Sear chicken until well browned, about 5 minutes per side. When the chicken is done pour the pomegranate syrup on top.

Roast 15 minutes. Baste poussins with pan juices and scatter walnuts around. Continue roasting, basting every 10 minutes until the chicken is falling off of the bone, 30 to 40 minutes. 

chicken with carciofi

~ by italicious on April 14, 2009.

8 Responses to “Roasted Chicken with Pomegranate Sauce”

  1. I think that the molasses will be even more delicious than the juice.

  2. This sounds so simple and delish. I have a bottle of pomegranate molasses lurking in the fridge and never know what to do with it! Maybe if I dilute it with water it would work?

  3. Yum! A lovely dish I will try as soon as gout leaves the foot of the head of the family. I think it might also be delightful with apricot juice. Whatever is at hand.

  4. stuffed? do share the recipe!

  5. that pomegranate sauce sounds amazing – as do those artichokes! i’ve never made them any way other than stuffed, but this is a MUST try for me!!

  6. I did cook it for Pesach, delicious

  7. I love pomegranate and will try this recipe for sure!
    Did you cook it for Pesach?

  8. your pics are as delectable as the recipe! i’m going to make this the second pomegranates arrive to the markets… soon i pray!

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