Israeli-Style Chicken Fricassée

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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.