Last week for much we I made Lamb Barbacoa. The dish was complex and delicious so this week I opted for a different direction. Chicken Tacos. These were simple and took minimal work but what they lacked for in complexity in technique in making them they made up for in taste.
It starts with roasting you chicken. The recipe calls for 2 pounds of thigh and leg meat but in all actuality you could just roast an entire bird. The key here is get the best chicken you can afford. I didn’t fully appreciate the importance of this until recently I switched to chicken from my butcher instead of the grocery store and WOW! What a difference!
- 2 pounds Chicken Thigh and Leg, bone-in and skin on
Preheat the oven to 350º F. Spread out in a roasting pan or even a sheet pan line with foil. Soften:
- 3 tablespoons Lard (or you can opt for vegetable oil)
Brush the chicken and then liberally sprinkle with coarse salt. Place the chicken in the oven and roast for 45 minutes or until the skin is golden brown. Remove from the oven and let cool to room temperature. (If on foil immediately place the chicken on a plate or it will stick to the foil as it cools.) Once the chicken is cool enough to handle remove the skin and meat from the bones. Discard the bones and coarsely chop the chicken.
Now make your Salsa Verde. To properly make salsa verde you need a molcajete. Even in my well equipped kitchen this was not something I had but knowing it was going to both get cooked into to the final mix in the end and not used as a side condiment I cheated and used my food processor. I put all the ingredients in together and pulsed until I got my desired texture.
- 3-4 medium Tomatillos, husks and stems removed, quartered
- 1 Garlic Clove
- 2 Serrano Chilies, stems and seeds removed, sliced in half
- ½ medium White Onion, cut into large chunks
- 1 teaspoon Salt
- 1 teaspoon Honey
- 40 Cilantro Leaves, from about 10 stems
Once the salsa verde was made place in a 4 quart sauce pan and bring to a simmer. Add:
- 1 bunch Kale, any variety, stems removed and chopped into small pieces
Once the kale begins to wilt add the chicken and any drippings and continue to cook until the chicken is warmed through. Set aside until ready to serve.
- Corn or Flour Tortillas
- Chicken Kale Mixture
- ½ White Onion, diced
- Queso Fresco, crumbled
- Lime Wedges
In my planning I missed that it also called for Creme Mexicana which is essentially a crème fraîche.
This is yet again another winner from the cookbook Tacos.