Abue Isabel's tinga de pollo and rice.

This recipe comes from a dear lady in our church.  She served it to my family for dinner once and we ALL loved it! Once we got through the Spanish/English translation and factored in the "this is how grandma cooks it" it turns out that it is quite simple to make.  I am certain that I have made this in a way that may not be truly authentic BUT every time I have made it for others, they have loved it! I want to make it at least once a week and it's so simple to do, that it is possible!

Abue Isabel's Tinga de Pollo 

2-3 chicken breasts
2-3 tablespoons olive oil 
1 medium onion chopped (I use my food processor- makes them invisible to children)
2-3 garlic cloves minced (I use a a tube of garlic paste found in the fresh veggie section of the Krogers)
1 can of crushed tomatoes 
1 pound of Roma tomatoes (finely chopped- I use my food processor)
1 can chipotle peppers in adobo sauce (I chop the whole can in my food processor so I can add to taste. DO NOT ADD the whole can at once.)
1 tablespoon of Knorr chicken bouillon (found with soups)
Salt to taste 

Sour cream 

Place chicken in a pot large enough to cover with water. Cover with water. Cook on medium heat until chicken is cooked through, remove from water. Shred and set aside. 

In a large pot (I use my non-stick dutch oven) cook onion and garlic in olive oil on medium until tender.  Mix in tomatoes, both canned and fresh. Add chipotle peppers a little bit at a time to taste. I would say to start with 1/4 of the can first. You can always add more.  Mix in knorr. Add chicken and allow to simmer for 20 minutes or longer. Add salt to taste and more chipotle peppers as desired. 

Serve by smearing the tostada with sour cream and adding 2-4 tablespoons of chicken on top. 

While simmering you can also make Isabel's delicious rice to go with the Tinga. My kids cannot get enough of this!

Abue Isabel's rice 
1 cup rice
half an onion chopped (food processor)
2-3 garlic cloves (I use a a tube of garlic paste found in the fresh veggie section of the Krogers)
1-2 tablespoons olive oil 
2 cups water 
1 tablespoon of Knorr chicken bullion  

Start with a large pot (I use my other Dutch oven) Cook onion and garlic in olive oil over medium heat until tender. Add water and Knorr and bring to a boil on high heat. Add rice and lower heat to medium. Cover and allow to simmer until rice is tender.
That's it! I'm sure this will become a family favorite for you just like it did for me! :) A huge thank you to those who helped me get the recipe in English and written out! :) 
P.S.  This is a great way to shred that chicken in a jiffy! 

Easy Homemade Marshmallows {and Hot Chocolate} Recipe

It's my personal philosphy to try to make everything from scratch at least once.  Not only does it put you in touch with what is actually in your food, but you'll learn what is worth making yourself and what is fine another way.  This weekend I tried that with marshmallows and hot chocolate.  I'm only sad that I didn't try this sooner!  Both of these recipes are from Alton Brown, one of my favorite go to chefs.  I made some modifications of my own.  They are easy and fun and WORTH doing from scratch!

3 pkgs unflavored gelatin (look near the Jello)
1 cup cold water
1 1/2 cups of sugar
1 cup light corn syrup
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla
equal parts powdered sugar and cornstarch (I used about a cup of each total)

Prepare a cookie sheet.  Line a sheet with a generous portion of parchment paper.  Sprinkle the entire surface with powdered sugar/corn starch mixture covering the whole surface. 

Combine gelatin and 1/2 cup cold water in the bowl of your mixer. 

Combine 1/2 cup of water, sugar, corn syrup and salt in a pan on the stove.  Cover and heat up over med high heat for 3-4 minutes.  Uncover and boil until it reaches 240 degrees.  Now my candy thermometer was in need of a new battery so I just guessed.  I waited until the mixture reached a boil and let it cook for seven minutes after that and that worked perfectly.  I stirred occasionally. 

Turn on your mixer with the whisk attachment on low.  Slowly pour the sugar mixture in along the side.  Once added, turn to high and allow to whisk for 12-15 minutes.  The mixture should have no heat when it's done. Add the vanilla at the very end, mix until incorporated.

Spread out over the parchment lined pan.  Use a rubber spatula to spread it evenly.  Sprinkle the top with more powered sugar/cornstarch. 

Once set, cut into squares using a pizza cutter lined with powdered sugar/cornstarch.  Coat the exposed sides as you go with excess powdered sugar mixture.  Store in an air tight container for up to three weeks. 

Enjoy with hot chocolate...recipe below!

This weeks teacher treats are some homemade hot chocolate and marshmallows! This recipe is also Alton Browns! It's simple and tasty!

Hot Chocolate

Combine the following in a large bowl:
2 cups powdered sugar
1 cup unsweetened cocoa
2 1/2 cups nonfat dry powdered milk
1 tsp salt
2 tsp cornstarch

To serve, use 2 tbls to 8oz hot water or milk. 

Enjoy! What better to do during the cold cold winter than experiment with some new recipes?

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