Sumac roast chicken with onions and flatbread

Adam Liaw
Winner winner chicken pitas.
Winner winner chicken pitas. Photo: William Meppem

Known in Arabic as "Musakhan", this is often considered the national dish of Palestine. Chicken is soured with sumac and roasted with caramelised onions, creating a rich sauce that is sopped up with taboon bread. If you can't find taboon, thick pita or even naan make great substitutes.


4 chicken marylands

1 tsp sugar

1 tsp salt

¼ cup sumac

1 tsp cinnamon

½ tsp ground black pepper

6 brown onions, peeled and thickly sliced

½ cup olive oil

4 pieces taboon bread, or thick pita, halved

1 tbsp finely shredded flat-leaf parsley, to serve

2 tbsp toasted pinenuts, to serve


Combine the chicken with the sugar, salt, sumac, cinnamon, black pepper, onion and half the oil. Marinate for at least 30 minutes, preferably for around four hours.  

Heat your oven to 220C (200C fan-forced). Heat a large ovenproof frying pan over high heat and add the remaining oil. Remove the chicken from the marinade and fry in the oil until browned on all sides but not cooked through. Set aside. Add the onion to the pan and reduce the heat to medium-low. Cook for around 20 minutes until browned and lightly caramelised. Return the chicken to the top of the onions, skin side up, and transfer to the oven for 25 minutes.

Arrange the taboon or pita on an ovenproof serving dish and brush generously on both sides with oil and juices from the chicken and onions, then place the onions and chicken on top of the bread. Return to the oven for 10 minutes to warm through. Scatter with parsley and pinenuts to serve.

Also try: Arabic chopped salad

Find more of Adam Liaw's recipes in the Good Food Favourite Recipes cookbook.

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