Thursday, March 22, 2012

Crisp Chicken Flautas

I am honing in on my Mexican culinary skills. After such tremendous success with the Crab Quesadillas I decided to tackle flautas, a fried rolled taco, a messy little snack I might add.  I surprised Tina with these when she came home this afternoon and they got a big thumbs up. I loved them and will be adding them to the party menu!

The original recipe called for a drizzle of Crema and green salsa. I decided to make more of my oh so very popular roasted red pepper aioli which was fantastic. I bedded the flautas on some green salsa and made a roasted corn and red pepper salsa to garnish it. Next time  I would skip the green salsa as it didn't add much and would try the Crema.

I am gearing up for a Mexican party. Soon. Very soon. Who wants in?

For the filling

2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 tablespoon chopped jalapeño, more if you want
3 cloves garlic minced
2 medium tomatoes, core, cut into 1/2 inch dice with seeds and liquid
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 bay leaves
2 teaspoons chipotle adobe puree
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
1/8 teaspoon dried thyme
1 pound shredded cooked chicken (I roasted one chicken thigh and some boneless, skinless breast)

Heat oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Add the onion, cook until translucent, about 3 minutes. Add the jalapeño and garlic and cook another minute. Add the tomatoes with liquid. Add seasonings salt, bay leaves, chipotle puree, sugar, oregano and thyme. Bring to a boil and cook until the liquid has evaporated and the mixture is slightly thickened, about 10 minutes. Stir in the shredded chicken. The filling should be moist but not wet; if necessary, increase the heat to high and cook off excess liquid. Remove from heat and cool to room temp. Discard the bay leaves.


You will need 8 six inch corn tortillas

Wrap the tortillas in a clean towel or paper towels and microwave for about a minute, let stand a minute.

Place two tablespoons or so in the center of the tortilla. Fold one edge of the tortilla over the filling and with your fingers pull the edge of the tortilla folded over the filling away from the center, making a neat compact shape. Roll up the tortilla into a tight roll. Fill and roll another flauta. Then place two flautas side by side with their loose edges touching the center. Pass two toothpicks through the center of the flautas to hold them together and keep them from coming undone during frying. Repeat with the remaining tortillas and filling. the flautas can be formed up to several house before cooking. Refrigerate them in a covered container until ready to cook.

Cooking the Flautas:

If you want to keep the first round hot while you cook the rest keep them in a 250 degree oven. Heat 1/4 a cup of vegetable oil in a 10 inch skillet over medium heat until it reached 350 degrees. Carefully lay 2 pairs of the flautas in the oil and cook until the underside is lightly browned and crisp, about 3 minutes, maybe longer, check after three minutes. Turn and cook the other side for another 3-4 minutes. Remove to a paper towel lined bowl to drain. The oil can seep into the center of the flautas, draining them on an angle in a shallow bowl line with paper towels will help get rid of excess oil. Repeat with the remaining flautas.

Plating the Flautas:

To serve line plates with shredded lettuce if you like. Top with two flautas and remove the tooth picks. Spoon what ever you want on the top. I made a salsa with roasted corn, red onion, red pepper, cilantro a little lime juice and teaspoon of adobe puree. Drizzle liberally with Crema in a zigzag pattern and sprinkle with cheese if you want.