Recipe courtesy of Chef Bren Ankrum – Culinary Editor
When we are in the mood for a smoky, spicy taco, this is one of our favorites. To do so we need 1 chicken breast and some previously smoked tomatoes and chiles from a mother batch made earlier in the week. Rather than buy chicken breasts for this dish I will purchase the whole bird.
I buy only organically raised chickens which can be a little pricier than the alternative but substantially more flavorful and nutritious, therefore I buy the whole bird, to save cost, and break it down. The legs, thighs, wings are stored either refrigerated or frozen. The back, giblets, removed skin, etc., are frozen for making chicken stock at a later date. One chicken, costing about $9.00, makes three meals for two people plus you end up with at least a quart of chicken stock. This works out substantially less expensive than buying already butchered parts, and boxed stock for cooking applications.
Unlike other taco meals this one incorporates the majority of the ingredients and flavors in one pan creating its own pan salsa to add complexity and moisture.
Knife and cutting board, sauté pan and cover, tongs.
1 chicken breast, skin removed, sliced into ¼ “ slices
½ smoked bell pepper cut into julienne
½ smoked poblano chile cut into julienne
½ sweet onion cut into 1” thin pieces
1 jalapeno chile cut into thin slices
1 tbsp. cumin
1tbsp. chile powder
1/8 tsp. salt
½ tsp. black pepper
6 tortillas of choice
3 tbsp. peanut or olive oil
6 or 7 leaves of bok choy cut into strips
2 oz. cheddar cheese grated
½ an avocado cut into 6 pieces long ways
1. Add one tbsp. oil to a large sauté pan at medium heat and place the onions and jalapenos into the pan. Saute uncovered with a little salt and pepper for two or three minutes then add the cumin and chile powder, layer in the chicken, cover with the chilies and tomatoes, cover the pan and cook over medium heat until the chicken is tender and cooked through.
2. Remove the cover, reduce heat and simmer until the liquid from the veggies is almost gone, creating a thickened sauce in the pan. Turn off heat, cover, and let rest while you prepare the tortillas
3. If frying the tortillas, heat the oil to about 300 degrees, lay in the tortilla and cook until the edges begin to turn light brown, flip and repeat. Remove to basket lined with paper towels to rest.
4. Assemble the tacos for your guest or place all the ingredients on the table and let them assemble.
Makes: 6 tacos.
Nutritional Information per taco:
Calories 238, Fat 13.8 gm, Cholesterol 32 mg, Sodium 150 mg, Carbohydrates 16.3 gm, Protein 14.3 gm.