Although chicken yassa is common in many West African countries, it is widely believed that it originated in Senegal. Senegal is certainly the country most associated with the dish, which has become one of the most popular West African dishes served around the globe.
As with many dishes, each cook puts his or her own spin on the recipe depending on what is available in the area at the time. But at it’s most basic, chicken yassa is chicken marinated for many hours or overnight in a mixture of lemons and their juice and many onions. After the marinating, the meat is browned and then braised in its marinade which results in tender juicy chicken and a lemony onion sauce. Other potential ingredients include chili peppers, herbs and spices, and vegetables. Yassa is usually served with rice to soak up the sauce and stretch the meal out.
A dish of chicken braised with onions, lemons, and spices and usually served over rice
Chicken, lemons, onions