Wednesday, December 22, 2010
Chicken Posole with Tomatillos
This is a really easy and quick posole, but it's also packed with flavor. If you've never eaten it, posole is a soup with shredded chicken or pork, hominy and lots of Mexican flavors, like oregano, chiles, cilantro and lime. I like to add chopped fresh tomatillos to mine. They have a mild flavor that's crisp and clean--a cross between celery and a green tomato with a hit of lime. That's my best description. Plus, they contribute a vegetable component to the soup.
This is perfect for leftover roast chicken. Whenever I make roast chicken lately, I've started roasting two birds. It is truly no extra work, and the leftovers are awesome! Of course, if you never have leftover chicken laying around, you have other options...see the recipe head note!
You can poach some chicken breasts if you don't have leftover meat, or just use the meat from a store-bought rotisserie chicken. Turkey and pork also work well. Don't skip the extras--I especially love the sliced radish.
Serves 4 generously
1 Tbs canola oil
1 large onion, chopped
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp ground cumin
1/4 tsp ground allspice
Chile flakes to taste
4 cloves garlic, chopped
6 cups reduced sodium chicken broth (or use up to 2 cups water to replace some of the broth)
8 tomatillos, cut into quarters or sixths
28 can hominy, rinsed and drained
2 cups cooked chicken, chopped into bite-size pieces
Juice of 1 lime
For serving: thinly sliced radish, lime wedges, chopped cilantro, crumbled feta or cotija cheese
Heat the oil in a Dutch oven or large soup pot over medium heat. Add onion, salt and pepper to taste, oregano, cumin and allspice, and cook until tender and lightly browned. Add chile flakes and garlic and cook 2 minutes more. Add broth (or broth and water) and bring to a boil. Add tomatillos and simmer until tender, 5 to 8 minutes. Add hominy and chicken and simmer just until heated through. Turn off heat and stir in lime juice. Check seasoning and adjust as necessary (you may opt to add more cumin or allspice as well as salt and pepper). Serve with suggested accompaniments.