Serves 4 to 6
Juice of 2 lemons
130ml olive oil
1⁄2 tsp allspice
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp cardamom
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 whole chicken, about 1.5kg, jointed into 8
60ml vegetable oil
750g yellow onions, thinly sliced
750g purple onions, thinly sliced
45g pine nuts
45g flaked almonds
3 wraps of taboon, laffa or tannour bread, plus extra to serve
Yoghurt, to serve
1) Combine the lemon juice, 90ml of the oil, the allspice, cinnamon, cardamom, crushed garlic and 2 teaspoons of the sumac in a large bowl. Place the chicken in the marinade and massage to coat. Cover with cling film and place in the fridge for at least one hour.
2) Heat the vegetable oil in a large frying pan over a medium-low heat. Add the onions, season with salt and pepper, then reduce the heat to low and sauté until translucent, around 30 to 45 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from the heat, stir in the remaining sumac, and set aside.
3) Preheat the oven to 180°C. Place the chicken, the marinade and a third of the sautéed onions in an oven dish. Cover with aluminium foil and bake for approximately an hour, turning once. The chicken is done when the juices run clear when the flesh is pricked with a knife. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool.
4) Line two baking trays with parchment paper. Once the chicken is cool enough to handle, skin and debone it. Reserve the onions.
5) Lay the bread on the baking trays and top with the onions and chicken. Drizzle with the remaining olive oil the return to the oven for ten to 15 minutes, or until heated through.
6) Meanwhile, heat a small frying pan over a medium heat. Once the pan is hot, add the almonds and pine nuts and reduce the heat to low. Shake the pan continuously until the nuts begin to brown, about one or two minutes. Remove the nuts from the pan immediately – they will burn very quickly – and set them aside.
7) Remove the baking trays from the oven, sprinkle the nuts over the chicken and onions, and serve with yoghurt and some flatbreads on the side.