Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Yucatecan Chicken with Roasted Fresh Chile Salsa

A few years ago for Christmas, my sister gave me Rick Bayless's Mexican Everyday. I've tried a number of the slow-cook recipes, but this is the first grilling one. I marinated the chicken in the morning so all I had to do when I got home was grill it, boil some corn on the cob and make some rice.

For the Yucatecan Garlic Spice marinade:
1 head garlic, broken into individual cloves
1/3 c. olive oil
6 Tbsp. cider vinegar
Pinch of ground cloves
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. dried oregano
1/2 tsp. sugar
3/4 tsp. kosher salt

4 Chicken breast halves, skin and bones intact
1 cup chicken broth

For the salsa:
4 oz. fresh hot green chiles
4 garlic cloves, peeled
juice of 1/2 lime (about 2 Tbsp)
Salt, to taste

Make the marinade:
  • Cut slits in the sides of each garlic clove. Place in a microwaveable bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Microwave on high for 30 seconds. Cool until you can handle and then slip off the papery husks. Drop them one at a time into a running blender or food processor, letting each get chopped before adding the next. Stop the machine and add the rest of the marinade ingredients and process until smooth.
  • Pour half the marinade over the chicken, rubbing it all over. Cover and marinate for several hours. Refrigerate remaining marinade until ready to cook.

Make the salsa:

  • Preheat broiler.
  • Slice the chiles in half lengthwise, discarding the stems.
  • Arrange in a small baking sheet skin side up and toss the garlic among them.
  • Broil until the skins start to bubble and turn dark.
  • Puree the chiles and garlic in a blender of food processor, adding the lime juice and 1/4 c. water.
  • NOTE: Mine was SO HOT I had to add a roasted green bell pepper and 1/2 tsp sugar and we like hot food. I bought my chiles at the Scotch Plains Farmers Market. Who would have known such hot chiles grew in the Garden State!

Cook the chicken:

  • Heat the grill and grill according to your taste. We did them on high, 5 minutes per side, then turn the heat to medium and cooked another 5 a side.
  • While the chicken is grilling, combine the remaining marinade and chicken broth in a pan and bring to a boil. Simmer for a few minutes and keep warm.
  • Drizzle a spoonful or two of the chicken broth mixture over the cooked chicken.
  • Serve with salsa

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