Saturday, October 16, 2010

Mexican Inspired Stewed Chicken on Tap for the Steelers Beat Down of the Browns

I am off to some far off land called Greensburg to watch the Steelers beat up on the Browns this week. I am taking with me some Eggplant Dip, which I previously posted here.

But that's no reason to not post a new recipe here. This dish is great for chilly fall days and nights. It's a dish I make regularly. It takes some time to roast, but the prep itself is quite simple and fast. It's rustic, delicious and can be served with rice, rice & beans, roasted potatoes, roasted butternut squash or on tortillas as the base of tacos. I've used it in every one of those combinations and it was fantastic every time. This week, I'm going to make some with cumin scented rice, recipe below.

2 bone in, skin on chicken breasts cut in half (4 pieces)
1/2 or 1 whole can of chipotles in adobo sauce (these are generally about 7 ounces)
10 carrots, peeled and cut into large pieces
3 cloves of garlic, peeled and smashed
1 large yellow onion, peeled and diced
1 bay leaf
splash of wine or beer

1 1/2 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon cumin seeds
3 cups uncooked jasmine rice
2 small limes, juiced
6 cups cold water
2 teaspoons salt

In a large, oven-safe roasting pot, brown and salt the chicken breasts on all sides in a small amount of olive oil. (I had to do them in batches to get them nice and really brown.) Remove from heat.

Add the onion, garlic, carrots and bay leaf.

Run the chilis through the blender or food processor. You want to decide if you want it super hot or medium hot. If you like a lot of heat, use the whole can; if not, use half the can. Use one whole can of water though. You want the chicken to really stew. Pour the blended chilis over the chicken and carrots and add a splash of wine or beer, whichever you prefer or have at hand.

Cover and bake at 350 degrees for 90 minutes to 2 hours -- there's so much moisture that you can't really overcook it. Let it rest for about 10 to 15 minutes before serving and you can do the rice while it's resting.

For the rice, heat butter over medium heat in a large saucepan. When butter is melted, add cumin seeds and saute for 1 minute. Stir in the rice and cook for 2 minutes.

Turn the heat to high and add the lime juice, water and salt. Mix well. Bring to boil on high heat. Reduce heat and cook covered on low for 15 minutes until water evaporates.

When done, the chicken should be falling off the bone. Be careful with those little bones.

Go Steelers!