Friday, November 4, 2011

I Eat, Therefore....

When I'm happy, I eat.  When I'm sad, I eat.  When I'm lonely, I eat.  The only time I don't seem to eat is when I am sleeping or busy with projects.  With as much work as this house needs, I have been eating less, but still.... it's not really one of those you can just stop doing, is it?  (OK, you can, but really it's just not optional if you want to do ridiculous things like walk or form a coherent sentence or chase a 3 year old around the block).

But after this, I may be eating more.  For I have found a shredded chicken recipe that is good.  Maybe not even just good, possibly great.  I've only had it once, and haven't yet tried the frozen leftovers, but I feel comfortable giving this a 4 out of 5 stars.  There's little in my world of cooking that gets 5 stars.  Maybe bacon.  And Cinnamon Chocolate Bundt Cake.  But other than those, a 4 is sparkling recommendation.

This recipe comes from the America's Test Kitchen Slow Cooker Revolution.  I bought it before our local Borders shut its doors forever.  I was both excited with the bargain, and giddy at the prospect of discovering some new, less-intense recipes.  For you see, I have a love-hate relationship with my Crock Pot. I love the idea of less dinner work for me, but hate the fact that my Crock Pot seems to have a secret Turbo switch that makes 10 hour recipes overcooked by hour 5.  So, with that in mind, I have been tentatively dipping my toes (ew, OK, maybe not my toes.... at least not near the kitchen), testing out the waters with a few new recipes.  The Everyday Shredded Chicken Filling is AWESOME.   It can be used in nachos, burritos, flautas, enchiladas, quesadillas, or just added to a salad. It was easy, perfectly cooked, required items I had on hand, and is delish.  Here you go:

Everyday Shredded Chicken Filling
From: America's Test Kitchen Slow Cooker Revolution

1 onion, minced
3 TBS. chili powder
2 TBS. vegetable oil
1 jalapeno chile, stemmed, seeded & minced
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 tsp. ground coriander
2 tsp. ground cumin
1-8oz. can tomato sauce
1 1/2 tsp. sugar
1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken thighs
1 TBS. fresh lime juice

  1. Microwave onion, chili powder, oil, jalapeno, garlic, coriander, and cumin in bowl, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are softened, about 5 minutes; transfer to slow cooker. 
  2. Stir tomato sauce and sugar into slow cooker.  Season chicken with salt & pepper, add to slow cooker, and coat evenly with sauce mixture.  Cover and cook until chicken is tender, 4 to 6 hours on low (FYI: I set mine for 8 hours, and it was done in 3 1/2).  
  3. Transfer chicken to large bowl, let cool slightly, then shred into bite-sized pieces.  Cover to keep warm.  Let braising liquid settle for 5 minutes, then remove fat from surface with large spoon.  
  4. Toss shredded chicken with 1 cup braising liquid; add more liquid as needed to keep meat moist & flavorful.  Stir in lime juice and season with salt & pepper to taste.  
Note: I found a trick on Pinterest for shredding chicken.  Put the WARM chicken in the bowl of your Kitchenaid, attach the flat beater (cookie beater), and in 30 seconds you'll have perfectly shredded chicken!

Also: the braising liquid is where you control the spicy.  Because I have kids who complain about the spiciness of cinnamon in their pancakes, I used less liquid.

I made this into burritos, and it was awesome.  I can't wait to use this for our Christmas Eve enchiladas!  


sarita said...

Thank you! Your recommendations have never let me down, so I can't wait to try it!

Ben, Rebecca, Natali, & Isaac said...

Will be addinf this to our meal calendar for this week. Sounds great. One question...I never have frozen chicken thighs on hand. Could I just use more chicken breasts?

That's Ms. Amy to You... said...

Becca, I'm sure you can. I like the the thighs because they are really inexpensive, and keep everything moist because they are dark meat - try it!

Ashley said...

Kitchen aid for shredding chicken? Genius idea and I do love shortcuts. I agree with Sara, your recommendations have never let me down before- can't wait to try this one! :) thank you!

sarita said...

Made this and loved it! I knew I couldn't go wrong with you OR America's Test Kitchen---win/win!