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Persian Roasted Chicken With Dried Cherry-Saffron Rice

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1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

1 onion, finely chopped

2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1/2 teaspoon saffron threads, crushed

6 pounds chicken breasts, thighs and legs, with skin, on the bone

Salt and freshly ground pepper


2 cups basmati rice

1 stick plus 2 tablespoons (5 ounces) unsalted butter

1/2 cup dried sour cherries (4 ounces)

2 tablespoons sugar

1/4 cup slivered almonds

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