Musakhan Recipe (Arab Chicken Dish)

Tuesday 23 June 2020

The term "musakhan" literally means "something that is heated." It’s simple, delicious, and meant to be eaten with your hands. It’s usually presented with the chicken on top of the bread and is commonly served with soup.


2 whole chickens (about 1 kg./2 lb. each)
2 cups olive oil, divided
½ cup pine nuts
1 kg/2 lbs. onions, chopped
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. black pepper
½ tsp. ground cardamom
1 tsp. ground nutmeg
500 gr./1 lb. ground lamb
2 large pitas (or 4 small)
4 Tbsp. Sumac


  1. Heat 1 cup of oil in a large pan. Fry the pine nuts until golden, remove quickly, and place on paper towels to drain the oil.
  2. Fry onions in the same pan until golden. Move from pan to a plate.
  3. Cut each chicken into quarters, clean the insides, and season with salt and pepper.
  4. Heat oven to 180°C/350°F.
  5. Heat remaining oil in a large pot and fry chicken until golden. Add cardamom and nutmeg and place it on a plate.
  6. Add the oil from the onion to the oil that the chicken was frying in. Fry the ground lamb until browned, and season with salt and pepper. Add the pine nuts, stir, and remove from heat.
  7. On each of the pitas, spread half of the fried onions and top with 4 pieces of chicken. Sprinkle the ground lamb over the chicken, and season with sumac.
  8. Bake in the oven for 15 minutes until the chicken is nicely browned.
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