Sumac Chicken

Sumac Chicken with Caramelized Onion Flatbread (Musakhan)

A traditional Palestinian dish.
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Palestinian
Keyword: sumac chicken
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 5 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 35 minutes
Servings: 6 people
Author: Aliye Aydin - A Good Carrot


For Chicken

  • 2 teaspoons Thursday's Little Secret spice blend
  • 3 teaspoons fine sea salt
  • 1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 6 chicken legs (bone-in, skin-on),* about 4 pounds

For Caramelized Onion Flatbread

  • 4 large yellow onions
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons Thursday's Little Secret spice blend
  • 1 Tablespoon ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/3 cup pine nuts
  • 6 flatbreads** such as Taboon bread or pita bread


For Chicken

  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
  • In a small bowl, combine spice blend, salt, and olive oil.
  • Place the chicken on a sheet pan. Rub the olive oil-spice mixture all over the chicken pieces, even getting under the skin. Bake for 1 hour or until fully cooked.

For Caramelized Onion Flatbread

  • Meanwhile, peel and cut the onions into thin slices. In a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat. When hot, add the onions along with spice blend, cumin, and salt. Cook for 30-40 minutes until completely softened and browned. Turn the heat down to low partway through cooking, and add any water necessary to keep the onions from sticking.
  • When chicken is ready, pour any juices from the pan into the caramelized onions. Cover chicken loosely with aluminum foil while you finish the flatbreads.
  • Turn on the broiler. Dip the edges of each flatbread into the oil on the surface of the onion mixture. Arrange two flatbreads at a time on a large baking sheet. Spread the caramelized onion mixture on the surface of each flatbread, leaving a small border around the edge (like pizza). Add a generous sprinkle of sumac if you like. Add pine nuts. Place under the broiler briefly (2 to 4 mins), watching carefully, until edges and onion mixture are nicely browned.
  • To serve, top each flatbread with a chicken portion. Serve with this Turkish-Style Tomato Cucumber Salad.


* For a vegetarian version, roast together cauliflower, carrots, and chickpeas with spice blend and serve atop caramelized onion flatbread.
** If you eat gluten-free, just leave out the bread and top the chicken with caramelized onions.
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