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Shared by Einat Admony

Fesenjan (Persian Chicken With Walnuts and Pomegranate Preserves)

Yield: 4 servingsTime: 1h 30min

Fesenjan (Persian Chicken With Walnuts and Pomegranate Preserves)

Yield: 4 servingsTime: 1h 30min

This recipe was shared by Einat Admony. Read more about her family in "Einat Admony’s Rosh Hashanah Table" and try her recipes for jeweled rice tahdig, fresh herb salad, and baked apples with meringue.

If you don’t have the time or access to fresh pomegranates to make the pomegranate confiture, you can substitute ½ cup of pomegranate molasses, ½ cup of pomegranate juice, and ¼ cup of honey.


  • 2 cups shelled walnut halves and pieces
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon kosher salt 
  • 2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons ground turmeric 
  • 2 pounds chicken thighs and drumsticks (about 8 pieces)
  • 3 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1¼ cups Pomegranate confiture (recipe below)
  • Pinch of saffron threads (optional)
Main CoursesRosh HashanahMeat Gluten FreeKosher for PassoverMiddle East


  • Step 1

    Preheat the oven to 350°F. Spread the walnuts evenly on a rimmed baking sheet and bake until fragrant and toasted, 8 to 10 minutes. Set aside.

  • Step 2

    Place a large pot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat for 5 minutes. While the pot is heating, combine the salt, pepper, cumin, and turmeric in a small bowl. Pat the chicken pieces dry and season with the spice mixture, coating evenly.

  • Step 3

    Add the oil to the pot and swirl to coat. Working in 2 or 3 batches, brown the chicken on all sides, being careful not to overcrowd the pot and steam the chicken instead of searing it, about 10 minutes per batch. Transfer the seared chicken to a bowl and repeat with the remaining chicken pieces.

  • Step 4

    Remove the pot from the heat and let the oil cool slightly before discarding it. Wipe out any remaining burnt spices and return the pot to the stove.

  • Step 5

    Place the chicken on the pan along with the toasted walnuts and stir in the pomegranate confiture and saffron threads, if using. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, then reduce the heat to medium-low, cover with a lid, and simmer for 45 minutes, until the chicken is tender and the walnuts are caramelized.

  • Step 6

    Remove the lid and continue to simmer until the sauce has thickened and the chicken is evenly glazed, 15 to 20 minutes. Remove from the heat and serve immediately.

This recipe contains two parts: the chicken preparation and the pomegranate preserve. If you plan to make the entire recipe from scratch (more on a shortcut below), start with the confiture. 

Adapted from Balaboosta by Einat Admony (Artisan Books). Copyright © 2013.