Puffy Chicken Tacos with Red Cabbage Slaw

  • Preparation Time110 mins
  • Cooking Time15 mins
  • Serves6
  • DifficultyMedium

For the chicken:

6 chicken thighs
1/2 cup fresh squeezed orange juice
1/4 cup fresh squeezed lime juice
2 tablespoons smoky chilli powder
3 cloves garlic, coarsely chopped
2 tablespoons sunflower oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Peanut barbecue sauce (recipe follows)

For the peanut barbecue sauce:

1 tbsp sunflower oil
2-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and finely chopped
1 1/2 cups barbecue sauce
2 cups homemade chicken stock or low-sodium canned chicken broth
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1/4 cup peanut butter
Salt and pepper

For the red cabbage slaw:

1/2 head red cabbage, finely shredded
1 small red onion, halved and thinly sliced
1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
1/2 cup freshly squeeze orange juice
1/4 cup sunflower oil
1 tablespoon honey
1/4 cup chopped coriander leaves
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh mint leaves

For the puffy tacos:

3 cups corn masa mix
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
2 1/4 cups warm water
Vegetable oil, for frying
Shredded chicken, guacamole, beans and cheese or your favorite filling

For the peanut coriander relish:

1/2 finely chopped roasted peanuts
1 tablespoon light brown sugar
2 tablespoons finely chopped coriander leaves
Salt and pepper

To make the chicken: Whisk together orange and lime juices, chilli and garlic in a shallow baking dish, add the chicken thighs, turn to coat and marinate 1 to 4 hours in the refrigerator. Preheat grill to high or grill pan over high heat. Remove thighs from the marinade and season with salt and pepper on both sides. Grill for 4 to 5 minutes on each side or until just cooked through. Brush with some of the peanut sauce during the last few minutes of grilling.

To make the peanut chilli sauce: Heat the oil in medium saucepan over medium heat; add the ginger and cook until soft. Increase heat to high, add the BBQ sauce and chicken stock and cook, stirring occasionally, until reduced by half. Whisk in the soy sauce and peanut butter and cook for 5 to 7 minutes longer. Season with salt and pepper.

To make the red cabbage slaw: Place cabbage and onion in a large bowl. Whisk together the vinegar, orange juice, oil and honey and pour over the cabbage. Add the cilantro and season with salt and pepper. Garnish with mint. Let sit at room temperature for 20 minutes before serving.

To make the puffy tacos: Combine the masa mix, salt and warm water in a large bowl and mix until a smooth dough forms. Pull off pieces of dough and roll them into balls about the size of a ping pong ball. Cut a quart size resealable plastic bag open down both sides, to form a rectangle. Use the bag to line the tortilla press as you shape the tortillas so they do not stick: Lay 1 side of the plastic over the bottom of the press. Place a ball of dough in the center, and fold the other side of the plastic over the dough. Shut the top of the tortilla and press firmly down on the dough to shape the tortilla.

Meanwhile, pour 2 inches of vegetable oil into a large deep pot and heat to 160°C.

Drop a tortilla into the hot oil and, using a metal spatula, repeatedly douse the tortilla with the hot oil until it begins to puff up. Flip it over and, using the spatula, make an indentation in the center of the tortilla to form a taco shape. Transfer to paper towels to drain.

Place tacos, chicken, peanut-red chili sauce, red cabbage slaw and relish in bowls and on serving platters and serve.

Fill each taco with 2 tablespoons of shredded chicken, guacamole, beans and cheese or your favorite filling.

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