I’ve written out the recipe for a whole chicken since that’s what I had, but you could use all thighs as called for in the original recipe. If you don’t have sumac, you can leave it out and use a heavy hand with the lime instead. Or you can give the recipe more of an Indian flavor by subbing in a dusting of garam masala.
1 3-4-lb. chicken, cut into pieces, breasts cut in half
1 Tbsp. kosher salt
2 tsp. black pepper
1 tsp. ground turmeric
2 Tbsp. grapeseed oil (or vegetable oil)
3/4 cup water
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 juicy limes, halved
Sumac, for garnish
Arrange the chicken pieces in a single layer on a large plate. Mix together the salt, pepper, and turmeric in a small bowl. Sprinkle the spice mixture over the chicken, flipping to coat both sides.
Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat and add the oil. In two batches, brown the chicken well on both sides, about 3-4 minutes per side. Add all the chicken back to the pan. Add the water and stir in the garlic. Bring the water to a boil, then turn down the heat to low and cover the pan. Braise the chicken for 25 minutes, until the inside is opaque. Transfer the chicken to a serving platter, turn up the heat to high, and reduce the cooking liquid for a few minutes, stirring occasionally until slightly thickened. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Pour the sauce over the chicken, squeeze one lime half over the top, and dust with sumac and black pepper. Serve with rice and remaining lime wedges.
Source: Adapted from The New Persian Kitchen by Louisa Shafia