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Originally published November 19, 2008 at 12:00 AM | Page modified November 19, 2008 at 12:18 PM

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Recipe: Braised Chicken Thighs in Spanish Almond Sauce

Makes 8 servings: 8 bone-in chicken thighs, skin on (about 3 pounds), Kosher salt, Freshly ground black pepper, All-purpose flour for dredging...

Makes 8 servings 8 bone-in chicken thighs, skin on (about 3 pounds)

Kosher salt

Freshly ground black pepper

All-purpose flour for dredging

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

1/3 cup blanched (skinless) almonds

4 whole garlic cloves, peeled

2 slices Italian bread, about 4 inches wide and 1/2-inch thick, crust removed

1 yellow onion, chopped

1 dozen whole black peppercorns

1 clove

1/2 teaspoon saffron threads

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1 tablespoon chopped Italian parsley

2/3 cup dry sherry or white wine

1 cup chicken broth or water

1 bay leaf

2 hard-cooked eggs

1. Season the chicken on both sides with salt and pepper. Dredge in flour, shaking off excess.

2. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over moderate heat. Add the almonds, garlic cloves and sliced bread. Cook until all are golden brown, turning the bread once to toast both sides and stirring the almonds and garlic so they brown evenly. Transfer the almonds and garlic to a plate with a slotted spoon, and transfer the bread to the same plate with tongs. Let cool.

3. Add the floured chicken to the same oil and brown on both sides, working in batches if necessary to avoid crowding the skillet. Transfer the chicken to a Dutch oven that can hold all the thighs in one layer. Pour off and discard all but 3 tablespoons fat

.

4. Add the onion to the oil remaining in the skillet and sauté until soft, about 10 minutes.

5. In a mortar or spice grinder, grind the peppercorns, clove and saffron with 1 teaspoon salt. Stir in 1 tablespoon water.

6. In a blender, combine the fried garlic, almonds, bread (breaking it into smaller pieces), parsley and enough of the sherry or wine to allow the ingredients to move freely. Blend until smooth. Add the spice mixture and blend again.

7. Add the contents of the blender to the onions along with any remaining wine and the broth or water. Bring to a simmer, then pour over the chicken. Tuck in the bay leaf.

8. Bring the chicken to a simmer over moderate heat, then cover and adjust the heat to maintain a gentle simmer. Cook, turning the thighs in the sauce occasionally and thinning the sauce with water as needed, until the chicken is tender, about 1 hour.

9. Just before serving, separate the cooked egg yolks from the whites. Mash the yolks with a little of the sauce, then stir into the sauce. Remove the bay leaf. Taste and adjust seasoning. Grate the egg whites over the dish, or chop them finely and sprinkle them over the dish. Serve immediately.

Adapted from "My Kitchen in Spain" by Janet Mendel

Copyright © 2008 The Seattle Times Company

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