Tag Archives: slow cooked

Mexican Pulled Chicken With Black Beans And Chipotle

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What will endear you to this recipe is its versatility to be served several different ways. I have three different meals that I tend to make from this one chicken recipe.

There’s the obvious way – served with rice. My pick is often with black rice (which isn’t black once cooked but rather a deep purple and the more wholesome of the choices). Of course it’s absolutely delicious with both brown and white as well. Any steamed green will add good balance here.

On other occasions it’s soft tacos. The pulled chicken piled into a soft tortilla and adorned with guacamole, sour cream and something green, be it coriander, spinach, or crisp iceberg lettuce. Now that’s a meal my children LOVE.

Both of those meals tend to leave me with left overs, so what better meal to turn the remainder chicken into than soup!

An easy option for soup using the leftovers: Cook diced celery and carrot slowly till soft, add vegetable or chicken stock, add a large spoon of the pulled chicken – beans and sauce included – and possibly some more tinned tomatoes, simmer it gently, eat it lovingly.

 

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Don’t be daunted here, you prepare pulled chicken in much the same way as you prepare pulled pork, pulled beef, and pulled lamb. The simple method of using two forks to gently pull apart the tender meat is effortless when the meat has been cooked long and slow.

Here, whole chicken thigh fillets are braised in a Mexican flavoured sauce of tomatoes, spices, and chipotle chilli, and finished with grated chocolate, in much the same way as Mexican mole would be (but far easier). The chicken is then ‘pulled’ before going back in the sauce.

Although the amount of  chocolate used is small it must be of a high cocoa content – the sweet stuff won’t do. I use chocolate made with 70% cocoa beans. The sauce takes on a richer taste with a subtle earthiness that matches gracefully with the black beans.

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Mexican pulled chicken with black beans and chipotle 

Ingredients 

700g free range chicken thigh fillet 

2 medium brown onions, sliced thinly

2 cloves garlic, chopped

1 tsp dried oregano

2 tsp ground cumin

1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

3/4 cup chicken stock

2 chipotle chillies in adobo sauce, chopped – see note

400g can whole peeled tomatoes

2 tbsp grated 70% cocoa chocolate

1/2 tbsp brown sugar

400g can black beans, drained and rinsed

Olive oil

To serve

Steamed rice ( black, brown or white)

Mashed avocado

sour cream

chopped coriander 

Season the chicken with salt and pepper. Heat 1tbsp of olive oil in a heavy based pan with tight fitting lid, seal the chicken till lightly coloured on all sides.  Remove chicken and set aside.

Using the same pan (no need to wash it) heat another tbsp oil and cook the onions and garlic gently for 3 minutes. Add the oregano, cumin and cinnamon and stir till fragrant.

Place the chicken back in the pan, add the stock and chipotle chillies, and squeeze the tomatoes to break apart before adding to the sauce. Bring to the boil, cover with a lid, turn the heat to low and simmer gently for 45 minutes.

Remove the chicken and place in a flat tray. Using two forks pull the chicken into thin strips. Set aside.

Meanwhile, place the sauce back on the heat, add the chocolate, sugar and black beans and simmer for 15 minutes.

Place the pulled chicken back in the sauce, check the seasoning and serve with rice, avocado, chopped coriander and sour cream.

Note: Chipotle chillies in adobo sauce can be found in most green grocers, some Asian stores, delicatessens, or even order them on line. Once opened, store them in a air tight container in the fridge and use within three weeks. or try them in this great relish .

 

 

 

Slow cooked osso buco

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There’s no tricky technique involved when cooking osso buco. The steps are simple, the cooking is long and slow, and the end result is succulent meat that falls off the bone.

 

Osso bucco means bone with hole, and refers to the “cut of meat” used for this popular Italian dish. Thick slices are cut through the shinbone of veal or beef. I’ve used the more traditional veal in my recipe but have also cooked it with beef, which is just as delicious and a cheaper option to veal.

The combination of meat and bone means deep, rich flavours develop in the sauce. White wine can be substituted for the more robust red and two tins of crushed tomatoes will do the job if you don’t have passata (passata is also known as sugo, it’s a smooth, pureed tomato sauce). I’ve used rosemary and bay leaves for my herbs but feel free to substitute with fresh thyme or even fresh oregano.

 

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Although there’s rarely left overs from this dish, on the odd occasion that there are, osso buco makes a wonderful pasta sauce the next day. Pick the meat from the bone and slice into chunks and re heat in the sauce with a dash of water. Cook your favourite pasta shape to al dente and toss with the osso buco sauce.

For those of us in the middle of winter, I say ” turn the oven on, get a pot of osso buco cooking, and sit back and await the joy that is slow cooking”

 

Veal osso buco

 Ingredients

8 x pieces of veal osso buco

Plain flour to dust

Olive oil

6 French shallots (or 1 large red onion diced)

6 cloves garlic, halved

3 carrots

3 large sprigs rosemary

3 fresh bay leaves

1 cup red wine

1 x 700g bottle of tomato passata

1 cup beef stock

To serve

Mash potato

Steamed peas

 

Pre heat oven to 150C or 130C fan forced. Season veal with salt and pepper then lightly dust veal with flour. Heat an oven proof casserole dish with 1-2 tbsp olive oil. Seal veal in two batches till lightly coloured on all sides. Set veal aside on a tray.

Use the same pot with out washing it, heat 1 tbsp oil, add shallots, carrots, and garlic. Cook gently for 2 minutes. Add red wine, rosemary and bay leaves and reduce for 2 minutes.

Add beef stock, tomato passata and a large pinch of black pepper. Return veal to pan and bring to the boil. Cover with a lid, place in the oven and cook for 2 hours.

Serve osso bucco with mash potato and steamed peas.