Braised Chicklen with Tomatillos and Jalapenos
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Why I Love This Recipe
It's easy. Not quick (bone-in chicken takes time to cook). There are a few simple steps. I wouldn't take any short cuts. The results are absolute deliciousness. You start off by grilling the tomatillos and jalapenos. This adds a slightly sweet, smokey flavor and takes everything to another level. You end up with tender chicken covered in a delicately smooth sauce with hints of heat and something almost sweet in the end. I think what surprised me here was that the sauce doesn't look delicate with those little chunks of tomatillos and onions...but when it hits your pallet, you want to close your eyes and go...mmmmm
Ingredients You'll Need
6 tomatillos, husked
Extra virgin olive oil
4 chicken thighs (trimmed of excess skin and fat)
4 chicken legs
1 large onion (original recipe says Spanish onion, I used a white onion because that's what I had)
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 cups chicken broth
2 limes, zested and juiced
1/4 cup chopped cilantro, plus more for garnish
1/2 cup sour cream (I used Mexican Crema)
2 limes, zested and juiced
You start off by grilling your tomatillos and jalapenos. Sure you can do this outside on the bbq grill. I used my indoor grill pan on my stove. If you don't have either....do it in a heavy, hot skillet (cast iron would be best). Or....broil them in your oven. The goal is to get them charred.
Once they're all charred, set them aside to cool.
Get out a large pan with high, straight sides (not a big ole pot...you just want something that will eventually be able to hold everything without slopping over), Coat it with olive oil and heat over medium-high heat.
Sprinkle your chicken with salt and place in the hot pan, skin side down. Brown on all sides (I had to do this is batches). Remove the chicken from the pan and set aside.
Get rid of the fat in the pan and add in a little oil. Add the onions, sprinkle with salt and saute (scraping up the good stuff on the bottom of the pan that the chicken left behind) until the onions are soft, about 7 or 8 minutes.
Meanwhile, chop the tomatillos into chunks. Finely dice the jalapenos into little bits. If you're not into heat...ditch the seeds before you start dicing (thats what I did).
Once the onions are tender and smell ooooh sooo good....add the garlic and continue sauteing for another minute or two. Add in the tomatillos and jalapenos, chicken stock, lime juice and zest. Give it a quick taste and add salt if necessary.
Put the chicken into the pan, bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat and allow to simmer for 15 minutes. Remove the lid and simmer for another 15 minutes.
While that's going on, make the optional cream sauce but combining the sour cream, lime zest and juice (I added a small pinch of salt). Set aside until the dinner is ready.
Remove the chicken from the pan
Toss the chopped cilantro into the sauce and stir.
Serve by spooning the sauce over the chicken and garnish with cilantro and lime sour cream. To be honest...this dish did not need the lime sour cream. Had I left the jalapeno seeds in, I might've needed the cream to tone down the heat.