This pomegranate chicken is a spin-off of traditional Persian fesenjan. My version is less fussy in preparation and more savory than sweet. It's naturally paleo and gluten free, and a fun and festive way to use one of the most delicious fall and winter fruits.
Prepare the chicken (taking care to remove any visible fat first as it will turn gummy), shallots, garlic, ginger, and walnuts and set aside. Portion out spices and set aside. This recipe moves quickly, so prepped mis-en-place is useful.
Heat a dutch oven over medium high heat. Add the coconut oil, and heat until it shimmers.
Add the diced chicken to the dutch oven, sprinkle with a pinch of sea salt, and sautee, stirring frequently, until browned and no longer pink.
Add the shallot to the dutch oven, toss to with the chicken, and sautee until soft, stirring frequently, about 5 minutes.
Make a small clearing in the center of the dutch oven and add the garlic and ginger. Sautee, stirring continuously, until very fragrant, about 1 minute.
Add the spices, salt, and pepper, stirring throughly into the chicken, and sautee until toasted and fragrant.
Add the walnuts and stir into the chicken. Add the pomegranate juice, continuously scraping up any browned bits from the bottom of the dutch oven until the juice stops bubbling. Add the coconut milk and honey, then once again stir all ingredients together.
Allow the liquid to come to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium low, cover, and simmer for 20 minutes. Crack the lid and simmer an additional 10 minutes, or until the sauce is thick and the chicken is starting to fall apart. Stir occasionally throughout these 30 minutes to prevent scorching.
Ladle the chicken over steamed rice, couscous, cauliflower rice, or your base of choice. Garnish with pomegranate seeds and chopped parsley. Serve immediately. Leftovers keep in a tightly sealed container in the fridge for up to 5 days.