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yucatan recado chicken


mexican food contains many of the flavours i love – the heat of chilli, the tang of lime, the complex layers of spices and the freshness of herbs.

despite this it’s not something i have often enough. london is sorely lacking in decent mexican restaurants (although there have been a few opened in the past year or so) and it’s not something i cook very often as i don’t really know that much about the cuisine.

however, i’ve been craving the mexican combination of flavours and a rummage through the spice routes by chris and carolyn caldicote provided me with a fabulous marinade for some chicken and peppers.

the flavours in the marinade are fantastically well balanced and if anyone who is reading this finds themselves resorting to pre-mixed spices for mexican food, please try this instead. or if you just fancy ringing the changes with a new chicken dish, this should be on your list as it’s definitely worth trying. let me know how you get on.

yucatan recado chicken (serves 2-3)

2-3 chicken breasts, cut into strips

1 red pepper, sliced

1 yellow pepper, sliced

for the marinade*:

1 red onion, finely sliced

6 garlic cloves, with the skin on

1 teaspoon mixed spice

5 cloves

3cm piece of a cinnamon stick

1 teapsoon coriander seeds

1 teaspoon cumin seeds

2 tablespoons olive oil

juice of 1 lime

1 red chilli, seeded and roughly chopped

1 teaspoon dried oregano

½ teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

under a pre-heated grill, roast the onion and garlic until brown. set aside.

in a small pan, dry fry the whole spices until you can start to smell them. grind to a powder and add the mixed spice.

put all the prepared marinade ingredients in a food processor and blitz until smooth. mix the marinade with the chicken strips and leave for at least one hour.

stir fry the chicken, adding the peppers towards the end so they remain crunchy.

serve with tacos/tortillas plus a combination of the clichéd (and no doubt entirely inauthentic) accompaniments of guacamole, salsa, sour cream, grated cheese, shredded lettuce and jalapenos.

* this marinade is based on a recipe from the spice routes by chris and carolyn caldicote

Reader Comments (5)

Oh this is one flavorful chicken. I just love all the spices used in this.
June 8, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterMeeta
Authentic Mexican specialist, Thomasina Miers, will be opening a restaurant in Covent Garden in August:


June 8, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterDenzylle
meeta - it was so good, you must try it!

denzylle - thanks for the heads up on that, i'll have to visit. there are some other interesting sounding places opening too - i do love living in london!
June 9, 2007 | Registered Commenterabby
We are blessed to have several excellent Mexican restaurants in our area,... reasonably priced too! This chicken dish looks delicious though so we can have Mexican at home. Just throw a margarita mix in the blender and we're off!!!
August 6, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterValli
a margarita in the mixer - now you're talking valli!
August 6, 2007 | Registered Commenterabby

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