Makes 4 to 6 servings
¼ cup / 60ml safflower oil, plus more if needed
1 garlic clove
1 whole chicken, cut into 6 pieces
3 Yukon gold potatoes, peeled or not, cut into large (1- to 2-inch / 2.5 to 5cm) chunks
½ white onion, finely diced
2 cups / 480ml Salsa Verde
1 cup / 20g cilantro leaves, finely chopped
Corn Tortillas, warmed
Avocado, for serving
Warm the oil in a 4 qt / 3.8L Dutch oven or heavy-bottom stockpot over medium-high heat. Skewer the garlic clove on the tines of a fork and swivel it through the hot oil. The oil should be hot enough that the garlic sizzles and turns golden. Once this happens, remove the garlic and set it aside (don’t throw it away).
Add 2 or 3 chicken pieces, skin-side down, to the hot oil. Don’t overcrowd the pan. You are not cooking the chicken through, just searing it, allowing the skin to brown slightly, which brings out the flavor when it stews. The chicken skin will stick at first, but will release fairly easily once it’s done searing. Using tongs or a slotted spoon, flip each piece of chicken to sear the other side. Then remove the seared chicken and set aside on a plate while you continue to sear the rest of the pieces on each side. Set it all aside while you cook the potatoes.
Using the hot oil in the bottom of the pan (add a bit more, if needed), brown the potato chunks just as you did the chicken, adding them in a single layer and allowing them to turn golden on each side before flipping them. You are not cooking the potatoes through, just searing them; this also helps bring out their flavor and keeps them from falling apart in the stew. Once they’re a light golden color, remove them and set them on a plate.
Now take that clove of garlic that you used to swivel in the oil before you cooked your chicken and slice it fairly thinly. Add the sliced garlic to the oil in the pan, along with the onion, and sauté until soft and lightly browned. Strictly speaking, you could skip this step, since the salsa has plenty of flavor, but I really like the texture of the minced onion.
Add the salsa to the pot, along with the chicken pieces and potatoes. Bring it to a boil, cover, decrease the heat, and simmer for about 30 minutes. Cut into a thick piece of chicken and chunk of potato to confirm they’re cooked through. Shred the chicken for best results.
Sprinkle the cilantro over the stew. To serve, scoop the chicken over some tortillas, top with some fresh avocado and cilantro.
The tinga can be stored in a sealed container in the refrigerator for 3 to 5 days.
You can also serve this plate with warm refried beans on the side, its a heartwarming meal that will always bring you comfort.
Recipe Courtesy of My Mexico City Kitchen
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