This is a spicy little slow cooker recipe that is perfect for a busy spring day. Onions, potatoes, chicken, cilantro, tomatillos, and pickled jalapenos get layered in a slow cooker until all their flavors meld into one succulent and spicy little dish. The chicken is fall-off-the bone tender and the heat from the jalapenos is just the right amount of heat without being overwhelming. In fact, all the flavors here are just spot on. The potatoes really help to make this a very satisfying but light spring meal that fills you up without weighing you down. I'd definitely make this one again.
Slow-Cooked Chicken with Tomatillos, Potatoes, Jalapenos, & Cilantro
Adapted from Mexican Everyday
by Rick Bayless
1 medium white onion, cut into 1/4-inch thick rounds
medium (about 1 pound total) red-skin boiling or Yukon Gold potatoes, sliced 1/4 inch thick
8 skinless chicken thighs (bone in or out 1-1-1/2 pounds)
1 cup (loosely packed) cilantro leaves or 1/3 cup epazote leaves
1-1/4 pounds (8-12 medium) tomatillos, husked, rinsed and sliced 1/4 inch thick
1/4 cup sliced canned pickled jalapenos
2 tablespoons jalapeno pickling juice
Spread the onion over the bottom of a slow-cooker. Sprinkle with salt. Continue with layers of the potato slices, chicken thighs, cilantro or epazote and then tomatillos, sprinkling salt evenly over each layer before moving on to the next. (This is the only salt in the dish, so make sure to add enough.) Scatter the jalapeno slices over everything, then drizzle on the pickling juice. Cover and slow-cook on high for 6 hours (the dish can hold on the slow-cooker's "keep warm" function for 4 more hours or so).
Carefully transfer a portion of your pollo pulquero onto each dinner plate. If there is a large amount of juice in the cooker, tip or ladle it into a saucepan, set it over high heat and boil quickly to reduce to a rich consistency. Taste and season with more salt if it needs it, then drizzle over each serving. If you have any cilantro in the refrigerator, chop some to sprinkle over each portion.
A Quicker Oven Version: Heat the oven to 400 degrees. Layer the dish as described in a medium-large heavy pot, preferably a Dutch oven. Set the lid in place and bake for 45 minutes. Remove the lid and bake 15 to 20 minutes longer to reduce the juices. Spoon directly from the pot onto plates.
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