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Musakhkhan- وصفة المسخن الفلسطيني

Contributed by Mom Blogger on 25.11.2007:

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Musakhkan – Bread, Baked Chicken and Onions with Sumac. This is a Palestinian dish; a favorite made by the peasants but became one of the national dishes in Palestine. This dish is eaten with one’s hands and which literally means “something that is heated.”


1-One cut up chicken into six pieces, or a combination of chicken legs and breasts.

2-One cup virgin Olive Oil

3-One pound or a bit more of large diced onions

4- Fried pine nuts for garnishing

5- One table spoon ground cardamom

6-Two table spoons Sumac

7-Salt and pepper to taste

8-Flat sheet bread, marquq or Taboon bread. I usually get the wheat flat bread….Delicious!


1. Cut the chicken into up into two breasts, two thighs, two legs, and two wings. Prepare it for cooking by washing, cleaning and drying. I add a little bit of lemon juice and olive oil to my chicken to keep it smelling nice.

2. Sauté one medium diced onion, add the chicken, enough water to cover the chicken, cardamom, salt and pepper and boil over high heat and then let simmer until the chicken is done.

3. Add 1 cup olive oil to a casserole and cook the rest of the diced onions until translucent, this takes about 25-35 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the sumac and cook for 2 minutes to mix. Do not over cook the onions, you do not want them burnt and you do not want them mushy…they should hold their shape nicely.

4. Fry the pine nuts to a golden brown color. Make sure to watch them frying, they tend to burn quickly. This process takes about couple of minutes.

5. Right before serving, and to keep warm, remove the chicken from the pot, bake until golden brown.

6. In the mean time, you may cut up the bread or use it whole, and assemble in the serving platter. Add the first layer of the onion mix on top of the bread, add pine nuts. Repeat with another layer of bread, onions and pine nuts. It is up to you if you want to have one layer of bread and onions; I like to have two layers because the bread I use is very thin. At this point, add about half a cup of chicken stock if you feel that the bread is too dry.

7. Arrange the baked chicken on top and garnish with pine nuts.

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