|Santa Fe Chicken & Avocado Tacos with Lime Crema|
Sometime ago I was lucky enough to win an awesome gift set of Rachael Ray and Lawry products from a fellow blogger. Although I’ve used the bright red Rachael Ray Lasagna Lover Stoneware Pan a thousand times, I tucked the bottles of marinade and seasonings into my pantry and kinda sorta maybe a little bit forgot about them. I’m a blonde; it happens. A lot.
Soooo, on a recent organizing binge I was so tickled to rediscover my little bevy of Lawry’s goodies that I just had to use one of them immediately. I chose the Santa Fe Chili Marinade with Lime and Garlic and I was not disappointed. At. All. And to be honest, I really don’t use many premade marinades because, well, I’m a control freak about what goes into my food. But good news! These aren’t loaded with salt or sugar – they’re loaded with flavor! I really like them (I’ve also used the Mediterranean Herb & White Wine with Lemon Juice and Garlic but more on that in a later post) and will definitely use them when I don’t feel like or can’t make my own marinade, or when I need to marinate large amounts of protein. Two thumbs up!
Now on to the tacos.
These were really, really, really good. Really. And so dang fast and easy! The marinating was the longest part. And please, don’t let the lengthy ingredient list scare you; they come together super fast and the layers of flavors just make my taste buds do the happy dance.
As you can see by the picture, I like to double my tortillas up like they do at the taquerias here in town because these babies are LOADED but single tortilla-ness works just fine too. I’d just have a fork handy because you’re not going to want to let a single bite go to waste.
For the chicken:
3 Tablespoons orange juice
½ cup Mexican beer (I’ll leave it up to you on what to do with the rest. Of the 6 pack.)
½ cup Lawry’s Santa Fe Chili Marinade with Lime and Garlic
¼ cup cilantro
1½ – 2lbs boneless skinless chicken, breasts or thighs or a combination of both, chopped into bite-size pieces
2 tablespoons of canola or grapeseed oil
For the Crema:
1 lime, juiced (about ¼ cup)
1 cup Mexican Crema (easily found in Latin markets)
¼ teaspoon cumin
For the tacos:
2 ripe avocados, diced
¼ teaspoon garlic powder
8 corn tortillas (or 16 if you like to double them up like I do!)
4 scallions, chopped
1 medium tomato, diced
¼ cup cilantro
Freshly ground black pepper
Lime wedges for garnish (optional)
Combine the orange juice, beer, Lawry’s marinade and a ¼ cup of the cilantro in a large bowl or plastic ziptop bag. Add the chopped chicken pieces and set in the fridge to marinate for 30 minutes to an hour. Don’t let it marinate too long or the chicken will begin to cook a little in the juice.
Meanwhile, combine the lime juice, crema and cumin in one small bowl and set in the fridge to combine.
Place the meat of the avocado in another small bowl; season with the garlic powder, salt and pepper and set aside.
Heat a skillet (don’t use a non-stick, you want some good color on the chicken) over medium high heat. Add the oil and once the oil is shimmering and hot, immediately add the chicken to the pan, spreading evenly throughout the pan – don’t overcrowd the pan; you may need to work in batches in order to allow the chicken to brown properly. Let cook on one side until golden brown, about 3-4 minutes, turn and continue to cook for another 3-4 minutes or until cooked through. Remove from the pan and set aside.
To assemble the tacos: Heat the tortillas in the method of your choice (I heat mine in the pan before I add the oil to cook the chicken, wrap them in foil and then place them in a 200° oven). Fill each tortilla (or layer two tortillas) with the chicken, season with salt and pepper and top with avocado, scallions, tomatoes and cilantro. Drizzle with the Lime Crema and serve immediately with lime wedges.