So last week-end I was really in the mood for chicken tacos. Usually I just throw some chicken on the grill and then assemble in a corn tortilla with some avocado and onion. But this time I was in the mood for something a little more authentic.

I decided to braise my chicken similar to the way I cook pork. I really wanted this chicken to have a deep layered flavor so I thought the best way to achieve this would be to do a dry rub of sorts and let the chicken sit in the fridge overnight and absorb the flavor of the spices.

I threw together a spice mixture containing Smoky Paprika from Spain which has a great flavor, along with some chili pepper, cumin, coriander, a pinch of cayenne, S & P and brown sugar.  I rubbed this mixture all over my chicken breasts and then drizzled a little olive oil in there just for good measure.

Into the fridge those babies went to party all night long with their spices.

The next morning I took out my dutch oven ( I love my dutch oven!) and added a couple of glugs of olive/canola oil mix and then a large sliced sweet onion and a couple of cloves of garlic. I let those saute for a couple of minutes and then I added the chicken breasts and turned the heat up to high so they could brown. With the heat still on high, I added about 1 cup of white wine. When the wine is cooked off you add about 3 cups of chicken stock and some tomatoes or salsa. I didn’t have salsa but I had cherry tomatoes so I added those and it turned out fine. Place this mixture covered in your oven at 300 degrees. Your going to cook this for several hours, at least 4, and then check. The chicken should be really easy to shred at this point.

Now you are ready to serve your tacos. I used corn tortillas and topped my tacos with a little shredded lettuce, onions & Cotija cheese. But you could add Avocados, Cilantro or whatever you want. I served with black-eyed peas.

If you want good drinks to go with these I suggest a watermelon margarita type drink that I just read about in the NYT. I tried these and they are amazing!

Tequila Watermelon Punch

Or you could always just go with a Rose or White Wine Sangria.

Braised Chicken Tacos:

  • 4 large boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 4 tbs smoky paprika
  • 2tbs coriander
  • 1tbs cumin
  • 1tbs chili powder
  • pinch of cayenne
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 2 tbs brown sugar
  • 1 large sweet onion
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1 cup salsa or tomatoes
  • 3 cups chicken broth
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • Corn tortillas
  • Cotija cheese
  • Diced onion for topping
  • Shredded lettuce
  • Olive oil/Canola Oil mix
  1. Combine all your spices together and rub on chicken breasts. Drizzle with a couple of tablespoons of oil and place in refrigerator overnight.
  2. Heat 2 tbs oil in a large oven proof pot or dutch oven. Added onions and garlic and saute for a couple of minutes until sweating.
  3. Turn heat up to high and add chicken breasts and brown on all sides.
  4. With heat still on high add white wine and cook off.
  5. Add chicken broth and salsa and cover.
  6. Place into 300 degree oven and cook for 4 hours. Check after 2 hrs and if needed add more liquid. Water is ok.
  7. After 4 hours remove from oven and shred chicken with a fork. The mixture will be really juicy, make sure to include the juices when making your tacos.

 

 

Written by mj

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