Spice-Rubbed Chicken Tacos with Shredded Napa Cabbage, Cilantro and Monterey Jack Cheese
Pairs Well With
Makes 12 tacos
2 teaspoons dried oregano leaves, crushed
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
½ teaspoon chipotle chile powder
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon ground paprika
1½ pounds skinless and boneless chicken thighs,
6 tablespoons safflower or canola oil, divided
3 medium red tomatoes, each cut into eight wedges
3 large fresh jalapeño chiles, cut in half, seeded, thinly sliced
3 tablespoons minced garlic
12 (6-inch) white corn tortillas
2 cups (8 ounces) shredded Monterey Jack cheese
3 cups thinly sliced Napa cabbage
2 cups lightly packed cilantro leaves
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Mix the oregano, chili powder, salt, cumin, chipotle chile powder, and paprika in a small bowl. Coat the chicken pieces with the spice mix.
Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a large, heavy-bottomed skillet heat over medium-high heat. Add the chicken and cook for 8 minutes on each side. Remove the pan from the heat and turn each piece of chicken once again. Cover the pan and let rest for 5 minutes. Transfer the chicken to a cutting board, leaving juices in the pan.
Preheat the oven to 400° F. While the oven is preheating, add the tomatoes, chiles and garlic to the chicken juices in the pan and cook over medium-high heat, just until the tomatoes soften, about 4 minutes. Scrape the tomato mixture into a serving bowl. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Coat 2 baking sheets each with 2 tablespoons of the remaining oil. Place six tortillas on each cookie sheet. Top the tortillas with cheese, dividing it equally. Bake for 5 to 7 minutes, or until the cheese is bubbly. Slice the chicken into 1/2 inch strips. Top the tortillas with chicken strips, followed by a scoop of the tomato mixture. Sprinkle with cabbage and cilantro, and then serve.