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Tahchin Morgh (Chicken Tahchin)

Prep time: 10 min
Cook time: 2 hours
Ready in: 2 hours 10 min
Yields: 6 servings


6 large chicken thighs
1 cup water
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
1 onion peeled

Saffron mixture
2 cups yogurt
½ teaspoon ground Saffron
2 egg yolks

3 cups long grain basmati rice
1½ tablespoons salt
10 cups water
4 tablespoons (¼ cup) oil
2 tablespoons butter


For chicken:

Wash chicken thighs; place in a large pan. Add 1 cup water, ¼ teaspoon salt, ¼ teaspoon pepper and 1 whole peeled onion. Bring to a boil. Lower heat to medium low; cover, cook for 40 to 50 minutes or until chicken is fork tender. Remove skins and discard onion. Set aside to cool.

In a small bowl, dissolve ¼ teaspoon ground saffron in 1 tablespoon hot water. Add 1 cup yogurt, stir to combine. Pour over cooked chicken. Season with salt and ground pepper.

For rice:

Bring 10 cups water and 1½ tablespoons salt to a boil in a 5-quart nonstick pot. Add rice; cook over medium heat for about 6 to 8 minutes or until rice rises to the top. Drain in a mesh colander.

In a medium bowl, dissolve ¼ teaspoon saffron in 1 tablespoon hot water. Add 1 cup yogurt and 2 egg yolks; whisk to combine. Stir in 3 cups half cooked rice.

To Assemble:

Heat 4 tablespoons of oil in the same pot used to cook the rice. Add saffron and rice mixture, covering the bottom of the pan evenly, followed by a layer of plain rice. Arrange chicken pieces over the rice, top with the remaining rice. Pour the remaining chicken juice, saffron and yogurt mixture over the rice. Cover, cook over medium heat for 10 minutes.

Place a clean dish towel or 2 layers of paper towel over the pot and cover firmly with a lid to absorb the steam. Lower heat to medium low, cook for 50 minutes.  Half way through cooking, add 2 tablespoons butter to the top.

To unmold the rice, place a round serving platter on top of the pot. Using pot holders firmly grab the serving platter and the pot flipping them over together.