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Israeli-Style Chicken Fricassée

The word fricassee conjures up many visions, some made with gizzards, meatballs, chicken and all manner of stuff swimming in tomato sauce and cooking for hours. Sort of like a Jewish version of Italian Sunday Gravy….everything into the pot!

Fricassee is actually a technique of partially browning chicken or turkey in fat and then braised in a sauce. How does this differ from a classic braise? The vegetables and meat are not completely browned, and the resulting braising liquid is not defatted and reduced until a thick glaze has formed. In other words, NO FUSS! This is a quick dish and you look like a rock star. 

Serve alongside Spicy Roasted Eggplant.

  • Duration
  • Cook Time
  • Prep Time
  • 4 to 6Servings


  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Kosher salt
  • Fresh ground black pepper
  • 6 chicken thighs or 1 whole chicken, cut into 8 pieces
  • 1 onion, thinly sliced
  • 6 garlic cloves
  • 1 tablespoon za'atar
  • ½ cup crushed, or chopped tomatoes
  • 1 lemon, thinly sliced into rounds
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • ½ cup tahini
  • Garnishes: chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley, za’atar, sesame seeds


1. Preheat oven to 350°F.

2. Heat a large saute pan, lightly coated with evoo, over medium heat. Pat dry chicken and season with salt and pepper. 

3. Place chicken skin side in pan and lightly brown for 5 minutes. Push chicken aside and add onion. Continue cooking for 5 minutes more until onion has softened. Add garlic, tomatoes, za’atar and lemon. Cook for 2 minutes until garlic has softened slightly.

4. Add chicken broth and tahini. Stir together to form a creamy sauce. 

5. Partially cover and cook either stovetop or in the oven at 350°F for 30 minutes or until chicken is cooked through. 

6. Transfer chicken to a platter. Pour sauce over chicken and garnish with parsley, za'atar, and sesame seeds. Serve alongside Spicy Roasted Eggplant.