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Khoresht-e Maast

Chicken stew in seasoned yogurt sauce with raisins and barberries
4.5 from 2 votes
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 1 hr 40 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Persian
Servings 4


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 chicken pieces, breasts and thighs
  • 1 onion, finely diced
  • 2 ribs celery, finely diced
  • 1 inch fresh ginger, peeled and minced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric, ground
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon, ground
  • 1 teaspoon cardamom, ground
  • 2 teaspoons coriander, ground
  • 2 teaspoons cumin, ground
  • 2 large tomatoes, diced and peeled (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground pepper

Yogurt sauce

  • 2 cups yogurt, plain and whole fat
  • 1/4 cup raisins
  • 1/4 cup almonds
  • 1 fresh lime, juiced
  • 1 inch ginger, peeled
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 1/4 teaspoons salt


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil or butter
  • 1/2 cup slivered almonds
  • 1/2 cup barberries
  • 1 tablespoon raisins
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1 tablespoon water


  • 1 sprig basil, fresh


  • In a large dutch oven, fry the chicken on medium-high heat for 5 minutes on each side until lightly golden brown. Set aside.
  • Discard all but about 2 tablespoons of fat remaining in the pan.
  • To the same dutch oven add the minced onion, celery, ginger and garlic and saute for 15 minutes over medium-high heat until the onion and celery become soft and aromatic.
  • Add all the spices and continue to saute for an additional 2 minutes.
  • Return the chicken to the dutch oven, add the tomatoes, salt and pepper. Cover and cook over low heat for 10 minutes.
  • While chicken is beginning to cook, prepare the yogurt sauce by combining all of the sauce ingredients in a blender and puree until completely smooth.
  • Pour the sauce over the chicken and bring to a gentle simmer. Reduce heat to low, cover and cook for 1 hour.
  • While the chicken is cooking, prepare the topping by sauteing the almonds with olive oil in a small frying pan over low heat until lightly browned, about 2-3 minutes.
  • Add the remaining ingredients for the topping, and gently toss and saute for 2 additional minutes. Set aside.
  • Once the stew has finished cooking, serve the chicken on a serving platter and sprinkle the topping evenly over the stew and garnish with a sprig of basil.
  • Serve the stew with Persian Basmati rice.


The onion and celery can be processed in the food processor as an alternative to mincing by knife. 
Keyword barberry, chicken, yogurt
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