I received an email from Williams and Sonoma that Bobby Flay would be at the Beverly Hills store signing copies of his new cookbook, Barbecue Addiction. I immediately called the store and purchased the cookbook so I could meet Bobby Flay. I started imagining what I would say to him while he signed my book. It dawned on me that the best thing to do was “speak his language.” I decided to share one of my favorite recipes with Bobby Flay. This Mexican inspired recipe was sure to get his attention. I titled the recipe Throwdown Worthy Green Chile Chicken Posole. While I waited in line, butterflies filled my stomach as I feared rejection. I admire Chef Flay, and would have been crushed if he didn’t accept my recipe. I thought to myself, “Why would Iron Chef Bobby Flay want to read my recipe?” I considered abandoning my attempt to swap culinary notes with the Iron Chef. I was next in line and they called me toward him. At that moment I thought to myself, “What do I have to lose?”
“Chef, may I share a recipe with you?”
He paused in surprise then answered, “Sure what do you have here?”
Shocked, I replied, “Chicken Posole!”
He leaned back against a table, took my recipe, and actually read it! We talked a bit about my choice of chile peppers. Then he said, “Thanks, this looks great. I love Posole.” I had died and gone to heaven. We took a picture together, and I left Williams and Sonoma shaking with the urge to cry. I still don’t believe I had the audacity to do that, however I stand by my recipe. This dish is chicken soup to my soul. I have every confidence this recipe would hold up in any competition. So… Yes! I have asked myself. And I’m ready for a throwdown!
6 Anahiem Chiles
2 white onions sliced 1/2 inch thick
1 garlic head halved
2 29 ounce cans hominy liquid drained
1 tablespoon of mexican oregano
1 teaspoon of ground cumin
fresh avocado slices
juice of 1 lime
salt to taste
1 whole roaster (about 4-5 pounds), rinsed, giblets discarded
2 carrots, cut in large chunks
3 celery stalks cut in large chunks
2 large white onions quartered
1 head of garlic halved
1 turnip halved
1/4 bunch fresh thyme
2 bay leaves
1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns
Chicken Stock recipe courtesy of Tyler Florence
Preparation of Chicken Stock
Place the chicken and vegetables in a large stockpot over medium heat. Pour in only enough cold water to cover chicken and vegetables; too much will make the broth taste weak. Toss in the thyme, bay leaves, and peppercorns, and allow it to slowly come to a boil. Lower the heat to medium-low and gently simmer for 1 1/2 hours, partially covered, until the chicken is done. As it cooks, add a little more water if necessary to keep the chicken covered while simmering.
Carefully remove the chicken to a cutting board. When its cool enough to handle, discard the skin and bones; hand-shred the meat and set aside.
Carefully strain the stock into another pot to remove the vegetable solids. Place the stock onto the stovetop and add the shredded chicken back into the stock.
Preparation of Salsa Verde
While the chicken stock is cooking, pre-heat oven to 400 degrees F. Place Anahiem chile peppers, tomatillos, onions, and garlic on a cookie sheet. The flesh of the garlic should be exposed and foil wrapped around the garlic shells to prevent burning. Each of these vegetables finish roasting at different times. The tomatillos will be done in 20 minutes. The onions and garlic will finish in 40 minutes. The anahiem chiles will be ready in 50 minutes. When they are done roasting, place the tomatillos, onions, and garlic in a blender. Place the roasted anahiem chiles in a sealed, gallon size, ziploc bag. Allow the chiles to sweat in the ziploc bag for 20 minutes. Remove the stems, skin, and seeds from the chiles. Add the chiles to the same blender and blend all ingredients until smooth.
Add the hominy, salsa verde into the chicken stock and shredded chicken. Season the soup with cumin, oregano, and juice of one lime. Simmer for 10 minutes and serve with fresh cilantro, salted avocado slices, and a lime wedge.
1. Using mexican oregano is imperative. I always place oregano into the palm of my hands and rub together into the soup. This will further grind and release the fragrance of the dried herb.
2. The vegetables from the chicken stock get discarded. They are only used to flavor the stock.
3. I found this chicken stock recipe 12 years ago, and use it for all my chicken-based soups. I vary the recipe by using a larger roaster chicken. I reserve four cups of stock in the freezer for use in other dishes.