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Mole Verde Chicken with Cilantro Lime Rice

Golden seared chicken breast topped with a verde mole (mol-eh) and cotija cheese served on top a bed of cilantro lime rice. 
Difficulty: Medium
Time: 35-40 Minutes
This dish is Gluten-Free
Calories: 573 Fat: 5g Carbs: 78g Protein: 53g

ABOUT THE DISH

Mole, pronounced (mol-eh), is a traditional sauce in Mexico. Oaxaca and Pueblo are the two states best know for their moles.  Mole pueblo is a dark red, smokey mole that is finished with Mexican chocolate. Oaxaca mole, or verde mole, is made from charred chilies, tomatillos and garlic thickened with pepitas.

Ingredients
Chicken breasts
Cotija cheese
Cilantro
Garlic
Jalapeño
Tomatillo
Jasmine rice
Pepitas
Green Onions
Cumin
Lime
Vegetable Broth Base

Cooking terms for this recipe

Tomatillo Mexican husk tomat
Bias slice Cutting or slicing on a diagonal angle
Zest The peel of, or grating of a citrus peel for flavor.
Pepitas Roasted pumpkin seeds

What you need

Medium sauté pan

Small pot with lid

Small mixing bowl

Food processor or blender

Cooking Instructions

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Step 1: MISE EN PLACE

Read through the entire recipe before getting started. Rinse and dry all produce. Remove cilantro leaves from 5 sprigs, chop and set aside, keep the other cilantro leaves whole. Remove the paper-like shell from the tomatillo and quarter. Cut the jalapeño in half lengthwise and remove the stem and seeds. Remove the root from the green onion and bias slice. Zest the lime, cut in half then juice. Add vegetable broth base to 1 cup of warm water, stir to dissolve. Crumble the cotija. Remove the chicken breast from the package, rinse and pat dry.

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Step 2: COOK THE RICE

Rinse the rice under cool running water until the water runs clear. This is to remove excess starch from the rice. In a small pot add the rice and 1.5 cups of water. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer and cover. Cook for 15-20 minutes until the water has been absorbed and the rice is soft. While the rice is cooking start to make the mole, step #3.

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Step 3: MAKE TEHE MOLE

In a medium sauté pan on medium high heat add 1 Tbsp. of oil. Add the tomatillos, whole garlic cloves, and the jalapeño. I only use half of the jalapeño because thats the heat level I’m comfortable with, you can decided how much jalapeño to add depending on how spicy you like it. Cook for 4-5 minutes, adjusting heat as necessary, turning and charring on all sides. Transfer the vegetables to a blender or food processor. Add 1/4 of the vegetable broth, cumin, pepitas, the whole cilantro and start blending. You want a smooth creamy consistency so add a little vegetable broth if needed. Keep blending until you have a very smooth and creamy consistency, about 2-3 mintues. Set aside until ready to plate.

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Step 4: FINISH THE RICE

In a medium sauté pan on medium high heat add 1 Tbsp. of oil. Add the tomatillos, whole garlic cloves, and the jalapeño. I only use half of the jalapeño because thats the heat level I’m comfortable with, you can decided how much jalapeño to add depending on how spicy you like it. Cook for 4-5 minutes, adjusting heat as necessary, turning and charring on all sides. Transfer the vegetables to a blender or food processor. Add 1/4 of the vegetable broth, cumin, pepitas, the whole cilantro and start blending. You want a smooth creamy consistency so add a little vegetable broth if needed. Keep blending until you have a very smooth and creamy consistency, about 2-3 mintues. Set aside until ready to plate.

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Step 5: SEAR THE CHICKEN

In the same sauté pan that you charred the vegetables over medium heat, add 1 tsp. of oil. Season the chicken breast with a pinch of salt and pepper. Sear the chicken for 3-4 minutes on each side. USDA recommends cooking poultry to an internal temperature of 165ºF.

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Step 6: PLATE YOUR DISH

Divide the rice between two plates or bowls, top with the chicken whole or sliced then drizzle with the verde mole and top with cotija. Enjoy!