Esta noche comimos los tacos!
And in my expert opinion, they were…eh. I invented the recipe on the fly and HB added ingredients with every walk by. We make street tacos all the time, but this time we were trying to replicate some tacos we ate at a hole in the wall a few miles away called Tacos El-Rinconcito.
Last time we went to this particular taco tienda, we ended up asking for our food to go because on Saturday, Tacos El-Rinconcito has a strict “we only serve people with neck tattoos” policy and we had Foodie Baby with us. We love the tacos at El-Rinconcito (we usually eat there during the week) because they shred the chicken instead of chopping it, and it seems like they must add it back into the pan with onions and garlic just before putting it on the tortilla because it is always very juicy and a bit crispy.
When I was putting together the ingredients for this dish, I realized that the El-Rinconcito secret isn’t in the shredding method, it’s actually in the TYPE (or more specifically, part) of the chicken they use. Instead of using the healthy chicken breast like the other tacos places, El-Rinconcito uses chicken thighs! That’s why they’re so juicy! AHA!
In order to keep it authentic (wink) I also decided to use chicken thighs. I started with onions, garlic, poblano pepper and jalapeno and sauteed it with olive oil for about 2 minutes. Then I added the chicken. At which point HB entered the kitchen and added: salt, pepper, cayenne pepper and sriracha.
I let the chicken thighs simmer for about 5 minutes on each side, covering the pan after I flipped the chicken. While the chicken was cooking, we steamed corn tortillas using our super sophisticated steaming method* and chopped the cilantro.
The meal was easy and flavorful. We ate it with lime rice and a salad with avacado, feta and mixed greens. I thought it was just ok, but HB really enjoyed it. Maybe I just needed some wine to enjoy it properly…or a few neck tattoos.
*Super sophisticated tortilla steaming: Place a veggie steaming basket inside a pot. Fill the pot with about 1/4 inch of water and bring it to a boil. Balance the tortilla atop the steamer basket for about 20 seconds. Repeat.
Hip-E’s Street Tacos El-Rinconcito
- 2 lbs. chicken thighs
- 1 sliced poblano pepper, divided
- 1 sliced jalapeno, divided
- 3 cloves of garlic, chopped
- 1/2 cup chopped purple onion, divided
- 1/2 cup cilantro, chopped
- 1/2 cup tomato, chopped
- a few shakes of cayenne pepper
- a squirt of sriracha
- salt and pepper
- corn tortilla
- 2 T olive oil
1. Sautee the 1/2 of the jalapeno and poblano peppers, 1/4 cup of onion, and garlic in 2 Tablespoons of olive oil, about 2 minutes.
2. Add chicken in a single layer. Meanwhile, chop the cilantro and begin the super sophisticated tortilla steaming (see method above).
3. After about 5 minutes, flip the chicken. Cover the pan with a lid.
4. Chop the chicken into small pieces, place atop the tortilla and top with raw onion, tomato and cilantro. Muy bueno!
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