Stews are the heart and soul of cold weather cooking because, as the flavors slowly meld together, your house fills with the most amazing smells.
- 2 1/2 cups (about 10 ounces) California walnut halves
- 2 1/2 pounds bone-in chicken thighs
- 2 teaspoons ground coriander
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 2 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt, divided
- 1/2 teaspoon finely ground black pepper
- 3 cups unsweetened 100% pure pomegranate juice
- 3 tablespoons packed light brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 medium yellow onions, finely chopped (about 3 cups)
- 1/2 cup roughly chopped toasted California walnuts, for garnish
- Pomegranate seeds, for garnish
- Roughly chopped parsley, for garnish*
- Cooked rice or another grain, for serving*
- Heat the oven to 375°F and arrange a rack in the middle. Spread the walnuts on a rimmed baking sheet, and toast until golden, about 8 to 10 minutes. Remove from oven until cool enough to handle then pulse in a food processor until ground into a fine meal.
- Meanwhile, use a paper towel to pull off any skin and any excess fat from the chicken thighs. Mix together the coriander, cinnamon, 1 1/2 teaspoons of the salt, and 1/2 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper and rub into the chicken thighs.
- Combine the pomegranate juice and brown sugar in small saucepan. Bring to a boil and let cook until reduced by half, about 30 minutes. When the juice is reduced, remove from heat and set aside.
- Meanwhile, begin cooking the chicken. Heat the butter and oil in a large, heavy-bottomed saucepan or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. When the butter foams, add chicken to the pan, working in batches, so it’s in a single layer and not crowded. Cook chicken until it’s golden brown on both sides, about 2 minutes per side, or until golden and seared. Remove the chicken from the pan and set aside. Repeat with remaining chicken.
- Remove and discard all but 1 tablespoon of the oil mixture from the pan. Add onions to the pan, reduce heat to medium, season with remaining 1 teaspoon of the salt, and stir to coat. Cook, stirring occasionally, until onions are golden brown, about 5 minutes.
- Add the reduced pomegranate juice mixture, ground toasted walnuts, and chicken. Cook on low heat for 1 hour, stirring every 5 minutes to prevent the walnuts from sticking to the bottom of the pan. Check to make sure the sauce is thickened and the chicken is cooked through and knife tender.
- Remove from heat and adjust sugar and salt to taste. Serve over cooked grains and garnish with walnuts, pomegranate seeds, and parsley.
*Not included in nutrition information