Marinade the chicken spices, garlic, cilantro, olive oil and lemon juice. Season with salt and pepper and marinade in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour.
Heat a heavy-bottomed pot or deep skillet. Saute onions with a bit of olive oil.
Place the chicken pieces in the pot once onions start to become translucent. Cover and cook the chicken over medium or medium-low heat, gently stirring and turning the chicken every 15 minutes or so, until the chicken is tender enough.
Keep the heat adjusted so that the chicken doesn’t scorch, and only add a little water if you feel you must; typically the chicken will braise in its own juices.
Add the lemons, olives, the rest of the saffron and simmer gently for 5 to 10 minutes.
Serve with crusty bread for soaking up the sauce. (we used pita bread, which worked just fine)