Heat oil in a large straight-sided skillet or a Dutch oven. Season chicken pieces with salt and pepper and add them to hot oil to sear. Remove to a plate.
Saute onion until soft then add turmeric, crushed red pepper flakes, apricots, olives, lemon zest and chicken stock. Stir and cook for a few minutes.
Return chicken to pan, bring to a boil and then partially cover and lower to a simmer. Simmer for 20 more minutes. Tear fresh cilantro over chicken before serving.