Chicken Tomatillo Stew

I’m kind of embarrassed to post this. This is not gourmet, and really this recipe is the shortcut of all shortcuts. But sometimes the simple things are just so darn good, and this recipe is share-worthy.  So here’s the deal… the main ingredient is jarred salsa.  There, I said it.  I probably could roast tomatillos and serrano peppers, but I live in southwestern PA and it’s just not that easy to find the amount of tomatillos I would need to make this.  Just kidding, I’m just really that lazy.  Who wants to roast and peel peppers when I could just pop open a jar of salsa?  Me.  Don’t judge.

I’ve made this about a million times and this is my favorite salsa:

It’s not only the perfect balance of heat and flavor, but this is the ingredient list:  tomatillos, onions, serrano peppers, iodized salt, and cilantro.  That’s it!  No phosphorus sulfate or cfhjihfvivhid (things I can’t pronounce), so it makes me feel better about using jarred salsa.

This makes a huge batch, because we like leftovers.  You will probably want leftovers too.

Chicken Tomatillo Stew

2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken breasts
5 1/2 cups salsa verde (or 3 16 oz jars)
1/2 large onion, chopped
4 -5 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon cumin
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon oregano
Salt & Pepper
Olive oil

Cut chicken in 1 inch chunks.  Pat dry with a paper towel and season with salt and pepper.  Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a medium soup pot over medium-high heat.  Working in batches, brown chicken on both sides.  Don’t worry about cooking it all the way through, only 1 -2 minutes per side, add more oil as necessary.  Set chicken aside.  Add onions to pot and saute until translucent.  Add garlic and saute until fragrant, about 1 -2 minutes.  Add salsa and chicken to the pot.  Bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer.  Add cumin, cinnamon, and oregano.  Taste and adjust seasoning as necessary.  Allow to simmer for 10 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through.  Serve plain or over rice.

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Spiced Pecans

Mmmm… spiced pecans.  I like mine without all the sugary stuff and just straight spicy.  They are awesome to munch on as a snack, but usually I throw them in salads.  You can really use any nut for this recipe, pecans are just my favorite.

Spiced Pecans

1 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon curry powder
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/2 garlic salt
2 cups shelled pecans
2 tablespoons olive oil

Preheat Oven to 325 degrees.

Mix together spices in a small bowl and set aside.  In a large saute pan, heat olive oil over medium low heat.  Add spice mixture and cook until fragrant (no more than 1-2 minutes), stirring frequently.  Add pecans and stir until coated with spices.  Transfer pecans to baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes.  Allow to cool, serve.