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Spiced Almond Crusted Chicken with Roasted Red Pepper Pecan Sauce

From: Recipe Challenge Winners

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Serves 6


2009 Diamond Recipe Challenge Grand Prize Winner: Nancy Elliott

A Middle Eastern spiced almond crusted chicken complemented by a red pepper pecan sauce.


  • For the Spiced Almond Coating:
  • 1 cup Diamond Whole Almonds
  • ½ cup sesame seeds
  • 2 tablespoons coriander seeds
  • 2 tablespoons cumin seeds
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • ½ teaspoon dried thyme
  • For the Roasted Red Pepper Pecan Sauce:
  • 1 cup Diamond Shelled Pecans
  • 12 ounces bottled roasted red peppers, drained, coarsely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons plain breadcrumbs
  • 3 tablespoons pomegranate juice
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 egg whites plus 1 tablespoon water, lightly beaten
  • ¼ cup vegetable oil
  • 6 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves, lightly pounded
  • Finely minced fresh parsley for garnish (optional)
  • Finely minced red pepper for garnish (optional)


Prepare Spiced Almond Coating: Place almonds in a small dry skillet over medium heat and toast until fragrant. Transfer to a small bowl. In same skillet, add sesame seeds and toast until golden brown. Transfer to bowl. Add coriander and cumin seeds to skillet and toast briefly until fragrant, stirring frequently to prevent burning. Transfer coriander and cumin to a food processor. Add almonds, sesame seeds, salt, pepper, and thyme, and pulse until finely ground, being careful not to overprocess to a paste. Transfer to a shallow dish.

Prepare Roasted Red Pepper Pecan Sauce: Place all ingredients in food processor and process until smooth, scraping down sides as necessary. Transfer to a small saucepan and keep warm over low heat. In a shallow dish, whisk together egg whites and water until slightly foamy. Place oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat.

Dip chicken, one piece at a time, in the egg whites, allowing excess to drip off, then place in spiced almond mixture, completely coating both sides. Add chicken to skillet and cook until golden brown, turning once, approximately 8 to 10 minutes. Using a wide spatula, remove chicken to a plate lined with paper towels, taking care not to disturb coating.

To serve, arrange chicken on platter. Spoon ¼ cup Roasted Red Pepper-Pecan Sauce decoratively lengthwise down center of each chicken breast, reserving any unused sauce to pass at table for use as desired. Garnish by sprinkling parsley and red pepper around edge of platter.

A delicously nutty, savory chicken dish.

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