Chicken in Almond Sauce
(Gallina en Pepitoria — Puerto Rico)


  • 1 medium yellow onion, peeled and minced
  • 2 large cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 cup blanched almonds
  • 1/3 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 (3 1/2 to 4 pound) chicken, cut into pieces
  • 3 large Roma tomatoes, diced
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 6 whole cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste
  • 2 medium eggs, lightly beaten
  • 2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons finely minced fresh parsley, for garnish


  1. Sauté minced onions and garlic in 1 1/2 tablespoons of the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until limp, about 6 minutes. Remove onions and garlic from the heat.
  2. Meanwhile, grind blanched almonds into a fine powder in an electric blender or food processor.
  3. Mix together flour and pepper in a shallow bowl. Rinse chicken pieces under cold running water, then pat dry with paper towels. Dredge chicken in the seasoned flour and shake off excess.
  4. Heat remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Brown chicken thighs and legs on one side, about 5 minutes, and then turn them over and add the chicken breasts and wings. Continue to sauté all the chicken pieces until they are golden brown, about 6 minutes per side.
  5. Stir in reserved onions and garlic, ground almonds, tomatoes, water, cinnamon stick and cloves. Bring the chicken to a boil, covered. Lower the heat and simmer, covered, stirring occasionally until the chicken is tender, about 35 minutes. Transfer the chicken pieces to a warm ovenproof plate or baking dish, cover them loosely with aluminum foil, and keep warm in a low oven while you prepare the sauce.
  6. Skim the fat off the sauce. Bring the sauce to a boil over medium-high heat and cook it, stirring frequently with a spoon, until it has reduced to 1 1/2 cups in about 8 minutes. Season the sauce with salt and remove it from the heat. Remove the cinnamon stick and cloves from the sauce and discard.
  7. In a small bowl, quickly whisk together eggs and lime juice; whisk the mixture into the sauce until well blended. The sauce should thicken instantly. Return the chicken pieces to the sauce and serve at once with steamed white rice. Garnish with minced parsley.

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