Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations

Khoreshteh Fesenjan

This recipe for sweet-and-sour chicken, pomegranate and walnut stew is adapted from Joan Nathan's The New American Cooking (Alfred A. Knopf 2005). It is one version of the traditional Persian dish. Serve with rice.

Serves 6 to 8

1 medium onion, chopped

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

1 pound walnuts

10 chicken thighs, with the bones, skin and fat removed

1 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

1/2 cup sugar

2 tablespoons ketchup

1/3 cup pomegranate juice, concentrate or syrup

Small pinch of saffron

4 cups water

Saute onion in olive oil in a medium pot until light golden brown.

Pulse, not puree, walnuts in a food processor, using a steel blade. The walnuts should have some crunch.

Add the chicken, walnuts, salt, lemon juice, sugar, ketchup, pomegranate juice, saffron and water to the onion. The chicken pieces do not have to be in a single layer, as long as they are covered with sauce.

Bring everything to a boil, then reduce the heat and cover the pot loosely. Cook for an hour at a slow and constant simmer, stirring occasionally.

Copyright 2023 NPR. To see more, visit