Margarita's International Recipes


Seco de Pollo

Ecuadorian Chicken

Seco de pollo is the type of dish that you get as a pre-fix meal in one of the myriad of little restaurants in Quito. It's a hearty, satisfying meal, but not what I would call particularly great. Still, I gave it a try. I wouldn't again as the flavor did not justify the expense of all the ingredients.

Serve with fried plantains and yellow rice

Ecuadorian Chicken


  • 1 bunch cilantro
  • 1 bunch parsley
  • 2 1/2 red onions
  • 14 garlic cloves
  • 8 tomatoes, quartered
  • 3 green peppers, quartered
  • 1 jalapeņo pepper
  • 32 oz beer
  • 1 tsp. oregano
  • 2 tsp. ground cumin
  • 2 tsp. ground annatto
  • 6 Tbsp. canola oil
  • 6 lbs chicken pieces
  • salt & pepper to taste


Chop about 2 Tbsp worth of cilantro and parsley, set aside. Cut two of the onions in quarters.

Using an electric blender, puree together the onion quarters, 10 garlic cloves, the tomatoes, green peppers, jalapeno, the whole cilantro and parsley leaves, beer, oregano and cumin. You may need to do this in batches. Set aside.

Chop the remaining 1/2 onion and crush the remaining garlic cloves.

Heat the oil over medium heat in a large cooking pot. Add the chopped onion, crushed garlic and ground annatto. Cook for 2 minutes. Increase the heat to medium-high, add the chicken pieces and brown on both sides. Add the reserved puree and simmer until the chicken is cooked through, about 2 hours.

Taste and season with salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle the reserved chopped cilantro and parsley and serve.

Adapted from Laylita's recipe at Las Recetas de Laylita.

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