Petti di Pollo al Melograno e Miele (Chicken Breasts with Pomegranate and Honey)

photo taken by In Praise of Sardines, on December 15, 2006, CC licensing

adapted from Silvia Nacamulli of La Cucina da Silvia

Silvia writes: "this recipe originally came from my family in Rome who likes to make it with veal, and uses onyx pomegranate. The honey is my addition to add another flavor of Rosh Hashanah, and to sweeten the pomegranate juice which sometimes proves too sour. If you want to prepare it with veal, the cooking procedure is the same; it just needs five extra minutes of cooking."
The sweet and tangy chicken-or veal-makes an elegant, yet simple main course.

Yield: four main course servings


  • 1 to 1 ¼ pounds boneless chicken breasts 
  • 3-4 pomegranates or about 2/3 cup bottled. pomegranate juice (see recipe)
  • 1 tablespoon honey 
  • about ½ cup white flour 
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil or margarine 
  • Salt to taste
  • about ½ cup. pomegranate seeds

Ask your butcher to cut each chicken breast into 3-4 thinner slices; otherwise you can do it yourself with a sharp knife, cutting the chicken breast lengthwise into thinner slices.
To make pomegranate juice from fresh pomegranates: cut off the crown and then cut the pomegranate in half. Squeeze each half through a large hand-press juicer. If you are using ready-made pomegranate juice, choose a good quality one, preferably 100% pure, preservative-free juice made from concentrate. Do not use pomegranate molasses here.
Add the honey to the pomegranate juice and stir to combine.
Rinse the chicken, cut off any fat and pat dry with paper towels. Pour the flour into a shallow bowl and lightly dust each chicken fillet with the flour.
Heat the olive oil or margarine over low heat in large non-stick frying pan. When hot, add the chicken fillets, taking care that they don't overlap. Sprinkle with salt, turn the flame up, and let them cook for 1-2 minutes on each side or until golden. Add the pomegranate and honey mixture and reduce the flame. Let cook for another few minutes, adding more salt and turning each slice it absorbs the sauce well. Arrange on a large hot serving plate or plate individually, pouring the sauce on top and sprinkling with the fresh pomegranate seeds to garnish. Eat immediately!

TIP: If you want to cook this dish in advance and serve it later, then simply use half the amount of the pomegranate and honey mixture when you cook the chicken. Once cooked, keep it covered and just heat it up again for a few minutes in the frying pan, adding the remaining pomegranate and honey mixture diluted in about 1/3 cup water.

Sephardic or Askhenazi