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Chicken Chilaquiles

  • SERVINGS: 4

Tortilla chips heated in a quick-cooking chile sauce and topped with feta, onion, sour cream, cilantro, and chicken make a particularly tasty version of this popular Mexican dish. Don't let the idea of softened chips put you off. This recipe is a winner.

  1. 3 1/2 tablespoons paprika
  2. 2 1/2 tablespoons chili powder
  3. 1/2 teaspoon cayenne
  4. 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  5. 1 teaspoon sugar
  6. 1/2 teaspoon salt
  7. 3 tablespoons cooking oil
  8. 3 tablespoons flour
  9. 2 cloves garlic, minced
  10. 3 cups canned low-sodium chicken broth or homemade stock
  11. 1 1/3 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts (about 4 in all)
  12. 1/4 teaspoon fresh-ground black pepper
  13. 1/2 pound tortilla chips
  14. 1/4 pound feta, crumbled (about 3/4 cup)
  15. 1/2 cup sour cream
  16. 1 red onion, sliced thin
  17. 1/2 cup cilantro leaves
  1. In a small bowl, combine the paprika, chili powder, cayenne, cumin, sugar, and 1/4 teaspoon of the salt.
  2. In a large saucepan, heat 2 tablespoons of the oil over moderately low heat. Add the flour and cook, whisking, until golden, about 3 minutes. Add the garlic; cook for 30 seconds. Add the paprika and chili powder mixture and then add the broth slowly, whisking, until smooth. Bring to a simmer. Simmer, covered, until thick enough to coat a spoon, about 25 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, in a large frying pan, heat the remaining 1 tablespoon oil over moderate heat. Season the chicken with the remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt and the pepper and cook until browned and just done, about 5 minutes per side. Remove the chicken from the pan and let it rest for 5 minutes. Cut crosswise into slices.
  4. Add the tortilla chips to the chile sauce and cook, stirring, until the chips are soft but not falling apart, about 2 minutes. Put the sauce on plates and top with the feta, sour cream, onion, cilantro, and chicken.

Suggested Pairing

These forceful, varied flavors need a gutsy wine, and Zinfandel will more than hold its own. Look for old-vine cuvées from Sonoma's Dry Creek or Russian River valleys.