Photo by Sonia Mendez Garcia

Citrus Chili Chicken With Tomatillo Sauce

Cuisine: Mexican
Servings: 4 servings

Sometimes I find myself with a little too much of two ingredients: tomatillos and chicken! So, I wondered, why not combine the two? Many times when I have marinated too much chicken, I will freeze it raw in the marinade, then bring it out weeks later and create a quick dish. At home I only cook for two, so I try to take one thing, like chicken, and create different dishes, so it doesn’t get boring, ha ha. I know that growing up in a large family, my mom cooked chicken at least 2 or 3 times a week. There are endless possibilities! Winner, winner, chicken dinner!!! Yes, I watch too much Food Network! But, I’m still having fun.


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  1. In a glass bowl, combine the chili powder, paprika, garlic powder, chipotle powder, salt, and pepper, stir to combine. Mix in the orange and lemon juice, then whisk in the olive oil, and taste for salt. Using the chili marinade, coat the chicken breast evenly, cover and marinate for at least 2 to 3 hours.
  2. Remove the husk from tomatillos and rinse in warm water. Combine the tomatillos, onion, and garlic in a microwave-safe container. Cover with a paper towel and cook in microwave for 7 to 8 minutes. Let cool slightly, then transfer to the blender, adding the bouillon and water. Blend until smooth, taste for salt, set aside.
  3. Remove chicken from refrigerator 30 minutes before cooking. Heat 3 tablespoons of olive oil to medium/high heat. When good and hot, cook the chicken for 5 to 6 minutes on each side. Add the tomatillo sauce from blender, reduce heat, cover and cook for an additional 20 minutes. Serve chicken with tomatillo sauce and garnish with roasted red pepper strips.

Chef Notes

Note: The sauce starts out green, but will turn a darker color when combined with the spices from the chicken. Serve the chicken with your favorite side dishes, such as corn, rice and beans, or with a simple salad.

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