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Day of the Drunken Chicken

We don't need any excuse for a party

We don’t need any excuse for a party – and Mexican Day of the Dead celebrations takes place on 1 and 2 November. In recognition of this, here’s the perfect recipe to get the fiesta going, from the amazing new Mexico: The Cookbook (Phaidon, £29.95).

INGREDIENTS 2 large tomatoes, chopped • 4 tablespoons corn oil • 2 (1.2-1.8kg/3-4lb) chickens • 2 cloves garlic, chopped • 2 sprigs parsley, chopped • 500g (1lb 2oz) chorizo, sliced • 500g (1lb 2oz) chopped ham • 1 litre (1 ⅔ pints) dry sherry or dry white wine • 1 tablespoon sugar • Pinch of ground cloves • Pinch of ground cinnamon • Pinch of black pepper • Pinch of ground nutmeg • 65g (2½ oz) raisins • 50g (2oz) almonds • Sea salt

METHOD

1. Put the tomatoes into a food processor or blender and process to a puree. Heat the oil in a large saucepan. Quarter the chickens and add the pieces, pureed tomatoes, garlic, and parsley to the pan and cook over medium heat, turning the chicken pieces occasionally, for 10-15 minutes.

2. Add the chorizo and ham and cook for an additional 5 minutes, then pour in the sherry and cook for a few minutes until the sherry has mostly evaporated. Add the sugar, cloves, cinnamon, pepper, nutmeg, raisins and almonds and season.

3. Reduce the heat and simmer for 15 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through and the cooking liquid has thickened.

4. Remove the pan from the heat. Put a piece of chicken on each plate, spoon over the sauce and serve with rice or salad.