So we celebrated Cinco de Mayo today by eating Chicharrones de Pollo, which is actually, um, a specialty not of Mexico, but of Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic, but we did have Mexican rice, tortilla chips and guacamole. It was an unhealthy, but intensely delicious and soul-satisfying meal. (I had planned to make this last week, before I was felled by the plague, so it came in handy to have everything ready for a Latin American, if not actually Mexican meal). The recipe for the Chicharrones is from the September 2007 issue of “Gourmet,” and I pretty much followed it to the letter.
Chicharrones de Pollo
- 1/4 cup amber or dark rum
- 1/4 cup fresh lime juice
- 1/4 cup soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1 1/2 lb skinless, boneless chicken thighs, cut into 1 1/2 inch pieces (you could use breasts, but they are less flavorful)
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- About 2 cups vegetable oil
- 1/2 teaspoon paprika (I used hot)
-Mix rum, lime juice, soy sauce and sugar in a shallow bowl until sugar dissolves. Add chicken, stir to coat, and let marinate for 25 minutes at room temperature.
-While chicken is in the last 5 minutes of marinating, heat 1 inch oil in a deep, 12-inch heavy skillet over medium-high heat until it shimmers.
-Whisk flour, paprika and 1/2 teaspoon salt in a second shallow bowl. Drain chicken and pat dry. Dredge in flour, shaking off excess, then transfer to a plate.
-Fry chicken in three batches, turning occasionally, until deep golden brown and cooked through, 6-7 minutes per batch. Transfer to paper towels to drain.
We ate ours with LOTS of very hot, hot sauce.