“Melting pot” cooking has given rise to innumerable ethnic grocery stores in the United States, and for people who enjoy cooking authentic Mexican food, this means that ingredients are easily available. Dried avocado leaves, essential to several Mixteca recipes, are sold in just about any Mexican grocery store. These are from the native Mexican avocado, Peresea drymifolia, as opposed to the U.S. Haas avocados, a descendent of the Guatemalan strain, whose leaves may be mildly toxic. Dried leaves of Mexican avocados may be ordered online from www.gourmetsleuth.com
- 8 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
- 4 large garlic cloves, peeled and crushed in a garlic crusher
- ½ medium white onion, grated
- 8 dried Mexican avocado leaves, lightly toasted and ground
- 8 tablespoons melted butter
- ¼ cup olive oil
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
- Salt to taste
- 6 cups homemade chicken broth, simmered until reduced to 2 cups
Place chicken in a glass baking dish. In a small bowl, mix the onion, garlic, half the ground avocado leaves, half the butter, half the olive oil, pepper and salt to taste. Pour the mixture over the chicken, cover and let rest for 2 hours, turning once.
In a saucepan, heat the remaining butter and olive oil, add the remaining ground avocado leaf and the reduced chicken broth, and stir with a wire whisk until the sauce has emulsified. Set aside.
Grill the chicken over hot coals or on a stovetop grill, brushing with the marinade, until the chicken is cooked through. Discard any remaining marinade.
Heat the sauce and serve the grilled chicken bathed in the sauce. Serves 8.
Culinary travel in the Mixteca Poblana: The avocado route