When I was working, I would drive home every day through the stockyards and just north of there was a sketchy part of town with bars on the windows, predatory loan businesses on every corner and all the signs were in Spanish. As a white girl who grew up in an upper middle class town, this said one thing to me: the food around here is probably pretty good. (What? Not what you think of?)
There was one place in particular that always caught my eye. There was just a sign over the door that said “Pupuseria” and I had no idea what it was, but I wanted it. I asked around and none of my mexican friends knew what it was so I had to do a little digging. This was also during a time when I had given up wheat the first time, so I was ecstatic when, on a gluten free blog, I discovered that these are a South American dish, made from masa, and it’s basically a stuffed tortilla. I HAD to try one, but there was still a barrier between me and the Pupuseria: language. My biggest regret in life is not learning more languages. I wanted to talk to these guys, ask questions, but I wasn’t able to, so instead I read as much as I could on the pupusa. I tried making them, but it didn’t work that well, so I forgot about them.
Cut to me in culinary school and I had to prepare a Latin dish. I figured “what the hell?” and gave them another shot. My instructor thought I was crazy, but that it was kinda cool, this was neither the first time nor the last time he would feel this way about something I was doing. Anyway, it worked out pretty well this time. It’s almost as if I knew what I was doing.
I’ve tinkered with them over the years off and on, and to be honest, I don’t always remember them when I’m trying to figure out what to make for dinner. Though I should. And you should too.
Here’s what you’ll need:
2 Chicken Breasts
4 cups Masa Harina
2 cups Cheese shredded
Preheat Oven to 350
Sprinkle: Salt, Onion Powder, Garlic Powder, Cumin over top of chicken in a casserole dish
Cover the dish, cook for about 45 minutes or until chicken is done
Masa: Follow package instructions, plus 2 limes, juice and zest, extra salt if desired
While dough is resting, shred/pull chicken, and shred cheese.
Stick thumb into ball to create a well.
Melt tablespoon of butter over medium high heat in a skillet.
Fray two flattened balls at a time, 2-3 minutes on each side until crispy.
Serve with your favorite toppings such as Guacomole, and salsa.
The next time you’re wanting to make tacos, try these. It’s just a little bit more work )unless you’re making your own tortillas, then it’s less work)but worth the effort, and you’ll save the effort later when you stick these in your lunch the next morning.