Chicken Vera Cruz Recipe

Chicken Vera Cruz

To say that this chicken dish was a recent hit at our family Shabbat dinner would be an understatement! I have had the recipe for over thirty years, having first discovered it in Victoria Principle’s Book, “The Diet Principle”. I forgot all about it until recently when I pulled it out to make for a family dinner. It got high marks from everyone.


  • 4-6 pieces of chicken, skinned
  • 2 tablespoons of unsalted margarine or vegan spread like Earth’s Balance
  • 1 tablespoon of oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon of freshly ground pepper
  • 1/3 cup of brandy
  • 4 cloves of garlic, pressed
  • 2 tablespoons of chopped yellow chilis (optional).
  • 2 6-ounce cans of unsweetened frozen orange juice, undiluted
  • 1/2 cup of slivered almonds
  • 1 orange, sliced


  1. Wash and dry the chicken and season with the pepper.
  2. Melt the margarine and the oil in a large skillet over medium heat, and sauté the chicken in it until golden brown on all sides.
  3. Pour the brandy over the chicken and carefully set it aflame, get your phone camera ready, because this is a great Instagram or Facebook moment!
  4. When the flames die down, add the garlic and chilis, if using.
  5. Blend in the undiluted orange juice and simmer for about 25 minutes, turning often to coat the chicken.
  6. When the chicken is tender, move it to a serving platter and pour the sauce over it.
  7. Cover with the chopped nuts and garnish with the orange slices.

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Lesley Wolman

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