Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Beer-Braised Chicken Tacos with Cabbage Slaw

I present to you the last of the recipes from my taco trifecta.

I know I'm going to garner some criticism for the statement I'm about to make. Any cook, good cook for the most part, will tell you that the dark meat chicken is much better to cook with than the white meat. It's more flavorful and remains moist, even after long amounts of cooking. Chicken breasts can dry out easily and there isn't as much flavor in the meat. 

This is what everyone says but me. Not that I disagree with them, I just don't like the taste of chicken thigh meat. I've tried to cook with it on a few occasions, this being one of them, and I just find the byproduct greasy.  At the end of the day, I'm a breast woman. :)

The flavors in this were great, but I think they would have been just as good with white meat. You be the judge and try it out.

Beer-Braised Chicken Tacos with Cabbage Slaw (serves 4)

  • 4 bone-in chicken thighs, skinned
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1 TB extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 1/2 cups brown ale
  • 1 tsp all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 tsp sugar
  • 4 center-cut bacon slices
  • 2 TB cider vinegar
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 2 cups thinly sliced red cabbage
  • 1 cup julienne-cut Granny Smith apple
  • 8 (6-inch) corn tortillas 

Heat a medium skillet over medium-high heat. Sprinkle chicken evenly with salt and pepper. Add 2 teaspoons oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add chicken to pan, flesh side down; cook 5 minutes or until browned. Turn chicken over; cook 2 minutes.

Combine beer, flour, and sugar in a medium bowl, stirring with a whisk until smooth. Slowly add beer mixture to pan; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low; cook 15 minutes or until chicken is done, turning once.

Remove chicken from pan; let stand 5 minutes. Remove chicken from bones; shred. Discard bones. Bring cooking liquid to a boil, scraping pan to loosen browned bits; cook 2 minutes or until reduced to 1/3 cup. Return chicken to pan; toss to coat.

Cook bacon in a large skillet over medium heat until crisp (about 8 minutes). Remove bacon from pan, reserving drippings. Drain bacon on paper towels; crumble. Add 1 tablespoon drippings to a medium bowl. Add remaining 1 teaspoon oil, vinegar, and mustard to drippings in bowl, stirring with a whisk. Add bacon, cabbage, and apple; toss to coat.

Working with 1 tortilla at a time, heat tortillas over medium-high heat directly on the eye of a burner for about 15 seconds on each side or until lightly charred. Arrange about 1/4 cup chicken mixture in center of each tortilla, and top with about 1/4 cup cabbage mixture.

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