Chicken & Dried Fruit (Mahmudiyye)

A chicken dish sweet enough for a Sultans feast.  Sauteed chicken with dried fruit and almonds in a turmeric-based stock with easy cook nutty orzo pasta grains. For a more indulgent treat substitute the turmeric for saffron. 

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Category: Chicken 'Tavuk'
Seasons
Cuisine Type Turkish

Ingredients

Turkish Chicken & fruit

1 Large Onion
0.5 Teaspoon Salt
1 Teaspoon Honey
2 Chicken Breasts, diced
1 Cinnamon stick
4 Cloves
1 Teaspoon Turmeric powder
80 Grams Chopped dried apricots
50 Grams Chopped dried figs
50 Grams Sultanas
0.5 Teaspoon Black pepper
50 Almonds
160 Grams Orzo pasta 'Arpa şehiriye' (1 'Su' glass)
400 Militres Water
Lemon juice

Turkish Chicken & fruit

Chicken & Dried Fruit (Mahmudiyye) Directions

  1. Chop the onions into thin half-moons and place in a large saucepan with a little olive oil.
  2. Begin to gently fry the onions ensuring they are well covered in the oil.
  3. Add in the salt, honey and a tablespoon of water. Stir and cover.
  4. Cook on a low heat for 10 minutes.
  5. In the meantime wash the dried fruit and leave to soak in a small bowl of warm water.
  6. Add the chicken into the saucepan, mix amongst the onions and fry until coloured.
  7. Bring a small saucepan of water to the boil and add in the almonds. Boıil for a few minutes.
  8. Working in batches remove 3 or 4 almonds from the water with a slotted spoon and slip of their skins.
  9. Drain the water from the dried fruit and add them to the saucepan along with the water/stock, spices, dried fruit and blanched almonds.
  10. Cook on a very low flame for 30 minutes.
  11. In a medium saucepan add a little butter or oil and gently fry the orzo pasta grains for a few minutes.
  12. Add in the water and a little concentrated stock or stock cube.
  13. Bring to a low boil and allow to cook for 8 to 10 minutes.
  14. Once cooked, remove both saucepans from the heat and add in a small glass of cold water or place under a running tap for a minute.
  15. Stir and then drain.
  16. The pasta can be mixed into the chicken stew or layered onto a serving plate.
  17. Before serving add a generous squeeze of lemon juice and butter of using.

Recipe notes

  • If pre blanched almonds are available the step slipping of the skins is redundant. Here in Turkey, they're harder to find so purchase 'iç bardem' and simply boil them for a few moments and the skins will slip right off. You need to work quickly however so working in batches of small numbers is easier. This also works very well for slicing the almonds. 

 

  • Sulphated apricots produce a nicer colour dish but unsulphured apricots are more beneficial and authentic. 

 

  • Orzo or Apra şehiriye in Turkish are small pasta grains that look like rice or malt grains. They are low costs and quick cook but could be substituted for rice. 

 

  • This dish would likely have had saffron in and can be substituted. 

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