In the province of Oaxaca in southern Mexico, chicken and other meats are often cooked with fruit and the spices that complement fruit. This area of Mexico has a little of everything, including mountains, very fertile valleys, and a mild climate. An abundance of produce and its famous chocolate make this area home to one of the most interesting cuisines of Mexico. Below is a tasty home-style chicken dish that I like. It’s easy and relatively quick to fix. Using orange rind rather than orange juice gives you that flavor punch but with much less acid. I serve it with rice or corn tortillas.
Orange Chicken Oaxaca (Serves 4)
- 3 Tbsp. corn oil, divided
- 1/2 cup chopped green onion (see note)
- 2 cloves garlic, sliced
- pieces of chicken (breasts or thighs) for four people
- 1 cup water
- 1 tsp. freshly grated orange rind
- 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
- 1/8 tsp. black pepper
- 1/2 tsp. dried thyme
- 2 bay leaves
- 1/4 tsp. salt, or to taste
In a large skillet, saute the green onion and sliced garlic in 2 Tbsp. of the corn oil until they begin to turn golden.Remove and set aside.
Wash chicken pieces and pat dry.
Add the remaining tablespoon of oil to the skillet and brown the chicken pieces.
Add the water and remaining ingredients to the skillet, stirring to mix.
Cover and cook over medium heat until the chicken is cooked through, about 35 minutes.
Note: Green onions are safer than bulb onions, and chives are safer still. If you use chives, you might want to use onion salt in place of the regular salt. Frying the onion until it begins to turn brown (as opposed to just throwing in raw onion and letting it boil) helps make it more bladder friendly.