Domat with Oriz (Bulgarian Tomatoes and Rice) 

Orly Peli-Bronshtein

1 hour

Serves 4

Chicken with Bulgarian Tomatoes and Rice

Chicken with Bulgarian Tomatoes and Rice | Photo by Oren Shalev

Recipe writer and esteemed cook Orly Peli-Bronshtein remembers her grandmother Marika making domat with oriz, or Bulgarian tomatoes and rice, every Thursday for her and her sister. “It was the first, humble version of paella I tasted,” she says.

 Marika made the dish with leftover chicken from her Shabbat cooking and  sometimes she would add homemade noodles or round ptitim, which she called couscous.

Many years have gone by, and grandma Marika is no longer with us. In her memory, Orly revived this beloved childhood dish and served it as part of the House Pot project, where talented cooks and chefs share a treasured dish for lunch at Cafe Asif.


4 chicken legs 

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

3-4 tablespoons olive oil

2 large onions, finely chopped

3 tomatoes, finely chopped

2-3 garlic cloves, sliced

1 teaspoon sweet paprika

1 tablespoon tomato paste, or sundried tomato paste

3-4 thyme stems

2 cups Jasmine rice

3 cups chicken broth or water, boiling

1½ teaspoons salt


For the cherry tomato confit (optional):

2 cups cherry tomatoes

1/4 cup olive oil

2-3 garlic cloves, peeled

3-4 thyme stems

Salt and freshly ground black pepper


To serve:

Chopped parsley

  1. Season the chicken legs with salt and pepper. Heat the oil in a large sauté pan with a lid over high heat. When the oil is hot, place the chicken legs in the pan, skin-side down first. Cook until golden brown, about 15 minutes. Flip the chicken and cook for another 15 minutes. Don’t rush it — the chicken should be nicely browned on both sides. 
  2. Remove the chicken legs and set aside.
  3. Lower the heat to medium-high and in the same pan, fry the onion until golden brown, about 3-4 minutes (add a little oil if needed).
  4. Add the chopped tomatoes, garlic, paprika, and tomato paste. Season with salt, pepper, and thyme. Continue frying while mixing with a wooden spoon, until a fragrant paste forms, about 4-5 minutes.
  5. Add the rice. Fry, mixing with a wooden spoon, until the rice absorbs the flavors, 2-3 minutes.
  6. Place the cooked chicken legs on top of the rice. Add hot soup or water and bring to a boil. In the meantime, taste the liquid. Add salt if needed.
  7. Cover and cook over low heat, 30-35 minutes.
  8. Meanwhile, prepare the cherry tomato confit: place the cherry tomatoes in a pan or a small pot with olive oil, garlic, thyme, salt, and pepper. Gentle simmer over low heat until the tomatoes soften and start to break down, shaking the pot gently periodically. Be careful not to scorch the tomatoes.
  9. When the rice and chicken have finished cooking, uncover the sauté pan. Make sure the chicken is well cooked and gently fluff the rice if you like. Serve hot. Alternatively, to add a bit of crust to the top, tuck the pan, uncovered, into a 400F/200C oven for about 10 minutes. 
  10. Serve with cherry tomato confit and chopped parsley.