Friday, October 9, 2015

Colombian Chicken Stew

This is my adaptation of the Kenji Lopez-Alt's Colombian Chicken Stew recipe from the Serious Eats blog.  It's a very simple stew, with only a few ingredients and no liquid added.  It's made in a pressure cooker (I used my Instant Pot) and the tomatoes, onion, and chicken make a good amount of very flavorful broth, without needing to add any liquid.  It's pretty cool and very, very yummy with simple, but really good flavors.  I should note that while this is called a stew, it's almost more like a soup because the broth is not thick at all.  You can get a slightly thicker stew if you cut your potatoes smaller because they will break up and thicken the liquid a bit when you stir it up at the end.

I made the stew once according to the original directions (except wasn't able to fit all the vegetables into my Instant Pot), then made it this way.  The original method is very tasty, but the broth is quite greasy and it requires a lot of careful sifting and straining to get all the bits of bone and skin out of the stew.  This time, I used boneless, skinless chicken breasts and put them in a soup sock.  Everything turned out just as delicious, but it was even easier to make.  I'm sick with a pretty bad cold at the moment and was craving this stew, so it being easy to make was a definite perk!
Colombian Chicken Stew
2 1/2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken breasts
3 cloves garlic, minced
4 large tomatoes, diced large
1 large onion, diced
1 large russet potato, peeled and diced large
2 bay leaves
salt and pepper to taste
Place chicken breasts in the bottom of an Instant Pot and top with all vegetables.  Add the bay leaves and sprinkle on a bit of salt and pepper.  Plug in Instant Pot, put on and close the lid, make sure it's set to sealing, and cook on manual for 30 minutes.  It will take a while for enough pressure to build up to seal the pot, so don't worry!
After the 30 minutes are up, release the pressure by pushing the little lever on top with the end of a long handled spoon.  Let the pressure completely release, then remove the lid.  Discard the bay leaves.  Pull out the chicken breasts, chop/shred them however you like, and add them back to the pot.  Add salt and pepper to taste, then serve.
Alternate Prep:  I haven't actually tried it this way, but you could probably put all the ingredients in a greased slow cooker and cook on low until the chicken is cooked through, then proceed with the recipe.  How long it will take completely depends on the slow cooker.
Yield:  About 6 servings

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