Note: This is part of a four-part recipe series, the Search for Enjococado.
I found this recipe from some googling and it was the first I made, mostly because it seemed like the closest. The flavors are quite wonderful and I was impressed, but something wasn’t quite right. It was clear to me that this recipe was some kind of enjococado, but not the kind I was looking for and definitely not the infamous one found at La Fiesta. It was also a bit too dark – too red – in color, something not hard to control, but I didn’t want to experiment too much the first time around.
This recipe is heavy on the chilies de arbol, causing a much redder color than the enjococado I’m used to. It also makes it quite a bit spicier than I’d like. One of the things I remember from visiting Fiesta Del Mar was its use of sliced almonds as a decoration on top. This recipe used no almonds at all.
Either way, I recommend you give this recipe a try. The flavor was good, albeit not quite what I was looking for.
- 3 chicken breasts halves (about 1 pound)
- 2 tbsp oil
- 3 medium tomatillos
- 2 roma tomatoes
- 6 guajillo chiles (dried, devined, seeds removed)
- 14 de arbol chiles (dried, devined, seeds removed)
- ¼ tsp whole cumin
- 2 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
- ¼ cup finely chopped yellow onion
- 1 small strip Mexican cinnamon (1 cm width, 4 cm long)
- 1 tsp oil
- 15 oz container of Mexican cream
- salt to taste
- Season the chicken generously with salt.
- In a large skillet or Dutch oven, add oil and heat to medium heat.
- Brown chicken pieces until they are about half cooked (in batches if needed).
- When chicken is cooked completely, remove from skillet and set aside.
- While chicken is browning, place tomatillos and tomatoes in a medium saucepan, cover with water, and bring to a boil.
- Once done, remove from heat add chiles and cover until chiles are rehydrated and soft.
- Place cumin seed, onion, garlic, cinnamon strip, and oil in a small skillet and gently fry on medium heat for 3-5 minutes to release and combine flavors.
- When onions are soft, remove from heat and place spices and onions in blender jar. (If you used a regular cinnamon stick, remove from mixture and throw out.)
- While reserving liquid, drain tomatillos, tomatoes, and chiles and place in blender jar.
- Add about 1 cup of reserved liquid to the blender jar.
- Blend well until sauce is very smooth.
- While chicken skillet is still hot, pour in sauce and stir to release brown chicken bits at the bottom of the pan.
- Replace chicken in sauce, reduce to medium-low heat, and cover.
- Allow to simmer for about 15 minutes, or until chicken is done. If sauce because too thick, add water or chicken broth in small amounts.
- Add Mexican cream and stir to combine.
- Simmer for 10 minutes to combine flavors and warm cream.
- Add salt as necessary.