Crock Pot Chicken Tacos
September 4, 2011, 10:03 pm
Filed under: Food and Recipes, Main Dishes | Tags: , , , ,

These tacos are so good, I’ve made them twice since discovering them and still haven’t grown tired of the recipe. I’m not exactly sure where the recipe originated, but a friend from work told me how to make the tacos. It’s so easy; it’s almost like not cooking, and is amazingly healthy! If you have chicken breasts in the fridge, that’s fine, but you can actually start them from completely frozen, which makes the dish even easier to make. Seriously, make these soon! You won’t be disappointed!

Crock Pot Chicken Tacos
Recipe courtesy of Jennifer Burkeen
4 WW PointsPlus per serving, makes 10 servings

4 boneless skinless breasts
1 small jar pace picante salsa (you choose the heat, I do medium)
1 packet taco seasoning

Place chicken in the bottom of your crock pot and cover with salsa and seasoning. Cook on low for 6-8 hours. Remove the meat, shred, return back to the sauce and stir to combine. Dip out into tortillas and top with toppings of choice.


Sunday Proper

I love watching Nigella Lawson’s cooking show, Nigella Kitchen, on Food Network. Something about the way she hovers in the kitchen makes everything seem so serene. Not to mention, I just love the way she loves food. Watching her on weekend mornings, with a cup of coffee, is my happy place.

I have the whole series saved to my DVR and am very hesitant to delete any of the episodes, lest not being able to enter my happy place at any point or time. However, I decided on New Year’s eve, to have a marathon and write down the names of the dishes that I simply had to make.

In her very first episode this season, she made her mother’s version of chicken dinner: Praised Chicken. Since watching that episode, I haven’t forgotten how good that chicken looked, and after re-watching it, I finally settled on making it that weekend. Folks, after making it, I can’t believe I sat on that recipe so long. I should be shamed.

The chicken dinner starts with a whole chicken in a pot, vegetables, spices, and water added, and simmered at a slow bubble until tender. Half between braising and poaching (thus, praised, haha) the chicken is so moist and succulent, the stock rendered so flavorful and bone warming. The scent draws you to the kitchen, especially on these cold days we’ve been having. My suggestion: have on a cold day next to the fire. It’s supposed to snow here soon in Memphis, this would be perfect to fit your snowed in blues! It’s truly a heart-warming dish.

Praised Chicken
Recipe slightly adapted, only slightly, from Nigella Lawson
Around 8 WW points plus a serving, including 3 ounces of chicken and 1/2 cup brown rice, add a side salad with low-fat dressing for a total of 9 WW points plus.

1 whole roasting chicken, innards removed
1 bunch green onions
1 bag baby carrots
1 bulb fennell
2 stalks celery
1 bunch parsley
1/2 cup vermouth
cold water
italian seasoning
garlic powder
olive oil
yellow mustard and brown rice for serving

1. After removing innards, pat dry your chicken. On a flat surface, place chicken breast side up. Placing your palm firmly on the middle of the breast portion, press downward until you hear the breast bone crack. This will help your chicken lay more flat in your pot. Season the outside of the chicken liberally with salt, pepper, and garlic powder.

2. In a large dutch oven, heat a few tablespoons of olive oil on medium-high heat. Place chicken breast side down in the pot, and allow to brown for a few minutes. Turn chicken over so it’s breast side up and allow to brown a few more minutes on the other side.

3. While chicken is browning, prep vegetables. Remove fennell top and bottom, and slice into large chunks. Chop celery and green onion into large chunks as well. Remove stalks from the bottom of the parsley bunch, and tie together with kitchen twine. Reserve the tops for later use.

4. Return to the stove, add vermouth to the bottom of the dutch oven. Add all vegetables around the chicken. Add parsley stalks. Sprinkle the whole pot with a tablespoon or so of dried italian herbs and another generous sprinkle of salt. Add cold water until you almost fill the pot. Leave about an inch to inch and a half of the top of the bird exposed.

5. Cover, bring to a boil, and then reduce to a simmer. Simmer for around 1 and 1/2 hours to 1 hour, 40 minutes on medium-low, or until bird is fork tender.

6. Remove chicken from the pot, cover with foil and allow to rest. The chicken may fall apart slightly, that’s ok.

7. Cook a pot of brown rice according to package directions and make a green salad for the side. Shred chicken off the bone. Serve on top of brown rice with a ladle of stock and vegetables on top. Garnish with yellow mustard and reserved chopped parsley tops. Trust me on the mustard, it’s delicious! Enjoy!