This a classic dish from the north. Apricots were introduced by the Moghuls, Muslim rulers who enriched India's art, architecture and cuisine and whose influence on north Indian food is indelible. Their legacy, Moghlai food, remains the most popular of all the regional cuisines. The apricots provide a pleasing sweet contrast to the spices, resulting in a glorious complexity of flavors and textures.


  • 1/2 tsp saffron threads
  • 12 skinless bone-in chicken thighs, or thighs and drumsticks, about 4 lbs
  • 2 tbsp oil
  • 4 cups finely sliced onions
  • 1 1/2 tbsp minced peeled gingerroot
  • 1 1/2 tbsp minced garlic
  • 1 tbsp minced green chiles
  • 1 stick cinnamon, about 4 inches long
  • 4 green cardamom pods, cracked open
  • 2 tsp salt or to taste
  • 1 can (14 oz) tomatoes, pureed with liquid
  • 8 oz dried apricots, stones removed


1. Soak saffron in 1/4 cup very hot water. Set aside.

2. Rinse chicken and pat dry. Set aside.

3. In a large saucepan, heat oil over medium-high heat. Saute onions until beginning to color, 6 to 8 minutes. Reduce heat to medium and saute until golden, 10 to 12 minutes longer.

4. Stir in ginger, garlic and chile. Saute for 5 minutes.

5. Increase heat to medium-high. Add chicken, cinnamon, cardamom pods and salt. Saute until browned, 8 to 10 minutes per side.

6. Add tomatoes and mix well. Cover and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer until chicken is tender and no longer pink inside, about 30 minutes.

7. Add apricots and reserved saffron water. Simmer for 10 minutes. Discard cinnamon stick. Serve with rice or an Indian bread.

Serves 8 - Tip - The apricots used in this dish are small, tan colored and fairly hard, with a stone. They are usually available in Indian stores. Remove stones with the tip of a paring knife after soaking.You can substitute regular dried apricots.

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Submitted 1/29/14.
Source: From Easy Indian Cooking by Suneeta Vaswani
Submitted By: b smith

Chicken with Dried Apricots