Saturday, January 9, 2010

Fiesta Mexican Chicken

Buenes dias and welcome to Mexico.

You've reached the first stop of the Equal Opportunity virtual trip with Joan of Foodalogue . If you didn't participate in Joan's last virtual culinary tour, your timing is good for the new tour by starting now.

To ease into the cuisine I thought I'd start with a recipe that I found on All Recipes for Taco Seasoning. Shame on me for knowing absolutely nothing about cuisine from south of the border. I do know that one of the Mexican painters I admire is none other than Frida Kahlo. Gotta love the unibrow.

What better way to start than from the ground up - understanding the ingredients.

Taco Seasoning

* 1 tablespoon chili powder
* 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
* 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
* 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
* 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
* 1/2 teaspoon paprika
* 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
* 1 teaspoon sea salt
* 1 teaspoon black pepper

1. In a small bowl, mix together chili powder, garlic powder, onion powder, red pepper flakes, oregano, paprika, cumin, salt and pepper. Store in an airtight container.

* I changed the onion powder for onion flakes and decreased the amount of sea salt. Very flavourful and lets you monitor the ingredients to you preference - perfect.

Now on to marinating the chicken

I think not knowing much about a cuisine isn't such a bad thing. You don't have to follow any "rules" and your creativity can just take over. I mentioned to an acquaintance who is from Mexico that I made taco seasoning and was going to use it with chicken. She actually looked horrified. "Noooo...she said, taco seasoning is for beef". I listened and then thought it's okay to break the rules.

1 lb cubed chicken, marinated
3 Tablespoons olive oil
1 onion diced
1 Tbsp minced garlic
1 1/2 cup cooked beans (I used chick peas and navy beans - not traditional - if you want to stay traditional pinto and black beans seem to be more favoured)
2 chipotle peppers (I used whole peppers from a can)*
1 small red pepper sliced
1/2 lime, juice only
handful of cilantro
1/2 avocado

1. Heat olive oil in frying pan to medium heat.
2. Add onions until translucent; add garlic watching not to burn the garlic
3. Add chicken pieces and fry until chicken changes colour on both sides; mix in beans, diced tomatoes and chipotle pepper. Cook together until combined (about 5-10 minutes) and the chicken is cooked through.
4. Finish with lime juice and cilantro.

Verdict: A really delightful combination where each ingredient comes through and packs a bit of a punch too. I made this recipe up using simple intuition and a vision of what Mexican food might taste like. I love it, or at least my version of it.

Here's the Itinerary (Posting Dates) for the Foodalogue tour south of the border:

* January 11, Mexico
* January 18, El Salvador
* January 25, Nicaragua
* February 1, Argentina
* February 8, Brazil
* February 15, Colombia
* February 22, Jamaica
* March 1, Haiti
* March 8, Cuba
* March 15, Puerto Rico

The Rules

1. Grab the event logo and put it on your blog with a link to FOODalogue.
2. Let Joan know by email ( when you’ve published.
3. Send her the original (large) photo link/file. It will be re-sized for best resolution.


Joan will publish on January 11 and every Monday thereafter. You can publish on (or about) the same time. Two days later on January 13 and each Weds. thereafter, a photographic round-up featuring all participant blogs will be published. StumbleUpon


FOODalogue said...

Your intuition and that home-made taco seasoning served you well. IMO the addition of cilantro and lime juice at the end also adds freshness and a distinct Mexican flavor. Great post!

Julia said...

How fun! I actually just got back from Mexico this afternoon and was going to post a recipe for fish tacos.

This looks great as well!

Peter G | Souvlaki For The Soul said...

It's good to break the rules! I think I prefer it on chicken anyway...see you in Mexico!

Valerie Harrison (bellini) said...

I think we are allowed to break the rules Mary. This will be a fun journey and I think we will need 2 bottles of sunscreen:D

Adam said...

Cool idea... it's like a food staycation, or whatever you call it :)

I never really knew that taco seasoning has oregano, now maybe that's what I've been missing all my cooking life :)

Christo Gonzales said...

this little journey is serving up my mainstays - hope I remember each leg of the trip.

kat said...

Breaking the rules is what creative cooking is all about!

noble pig said...

Those avocados have me salivating.

CDC said...

Love the post and idea of the different country cuisine/meals! I'm actually going to try something similar by making foods from different countries participating in the upcoming Winter Olympics as we watch those:) I have made fajita seasoning before, but never taco, so I'm so glad now I've learned:) Can't wait to read more! And the turnout sounds excellent!

Ruth Strong said...

Hey ladies! Great recipe - I was planning tacos later in the week using a packet of seasoning but might just give this a go! Thanks!

Cynthia said...

Now that's a spice mix!

Happily Losin' It said...

This recipe sounds wonderful! I can hardly wait to try it. And who would have thought that I'd have every single one of those seasonings in my very basic collection. So smart to make your own seasoning mix so you can control the salt if necessary!

Kitchen Butterfly said...

Thanks for letting me know I can make Taco seasoning.....! Great job....

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