June 18, 2013

Khoresht e Gharch: Persian Chicken & Mushroom Stew

I've been wanting to make this for ages, but somehow just haven't found the time, until now. The egg yolks make for a luxurious tasting sauce, sharpened slightly by the lemon juice and deepened by the brewed saffron. Do take the time to brew the saffron as indicated rather than simply throwing in a big pinch of the threads. It diffuses the flavour more thoroughly through the rest of the dish, and makes for a more even golden tone throughout.

Khoresht e Gharch
Persian Chicken Stew with Mushrooms
Adapted from My Persian Kitchen

Total Prep & Cooking Time: 65 minutes
Serves 8

8 chicken thighs, bone in, skin on
¼ teaspoon kosher salt
2 medium yellow onions, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced or crushed
½ cup water
600 grams mushrooms, chopped
1 tablespoon unbleached flour
Large pinch of saffron, brewed
¼ cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 tablespoon olive oil, divided
2 large egg yolks

Dice the onion fairly finely, and mince or crush the garlic. In a large pot, such as a dutch oven, sauté the onion and garlic in a half-tablespoon of olive oil over medium-high heat, until golden and translucent.

Season the chicken pieces with kosher salt. Scrape onion to the sides of the pot, and add the chicken pieces, skin side down. Cook for about 3 minutes on each side, then add ½ cup of water, stir well, cover, and cook on medium-low heat for 30 minutes.

While the chicken and onions cook, brew the saffron and prepare the mushrooms. To brew saffron, grind it (along with a pinch of salt) with a mortar and pestle until powdered. Put the powder in a small bowl or measuring cup, and add a couple of tablespoons of hot (recently boiled) water. Let it stand until you are ready to use it.

To prepare the mushrooms, clean and coarsely chop the mushrooms of your choice (removing any woody bits). Sauté the mushrooms in a half-tablespoon of oil over high heat, until their juices come out, and continue to cook until the liquid evaporates. Sprinkle the flour over the mushrooms and season with a little salt and pepper. Stir well, continuing to cook, and continue to stir and cook until it is well combined.

Add brewed Saffron and lemon juice to chicken and stir thoroughly. Add the mushrooms, and continue simmering (uncovered, now) for about 10 minutes. Beat the egg yolks in a bowl and carefully temper them with a bit of the hot liquid from the stew. Add the tempered egg yolks to the pot and continue cooking for another 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Taste, and adjust salt and pepper if necessary.

Serve over rice.

1 comment:

Ashley said...

Yum! I love Persian food, and this sounds wonderful!