Using local ingredients and recipes learned from his mother and grandmother, Chef Aarón Sánchez of New Orleans' famed Mexican restaurant, Johnny Sánchez, reinterprets his family's dishes through a modern lens. Sponsored by Cacique.
- 1 1/2 cups red wine vinegar
- 1 cup water
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 1 tablespoon kosher salt
- 6 whole cloves
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano (preferably Mexican)
- 1/4 teaspoon dried red pepper flakes
- 2 large red onions, thinly sliced
- Combine all ingredients except the onions in a heavy medium saucepan and set it over medium-high heat.
- Bring the mixture to a boil, then add the onion slices, separating them into individual rings. Let the mixture come back to a boil, then reduce the heat and cook until onions soften and wilt, 3 to 4 minutes.
- Remove the saucepan from the heat, cover, and let the mixture cool completely.
- Transfer the onions and their pickling liquid to a quart-size glass jar or divide among Tupperware.
- Cover and refrigerate for up to 2 weeks in the refrigerator.
- 1 cup canola oil
- 12 garlic cloves, peeled
- 3 tablespoons canned chopped chipotle chiles in adobo sauce
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
- Grated zest of 1 lime
- 1 teaspoon salt
- Preheat oven to 300 degrees.
- Pour the oil into a heavy ovenproof medium saucepan and add the garlic.
- Cover the pot with foil, put it in the oven, and cook until the garlic turns a nutty brown and is really soft (like cream cheese), about 45 minutes.
- Remove the pot from the oven and let the garlic and oil cool to room temperature.
- Put the garlic and the garlic-infused oil in a food processor or blender.
- Add the chipotles and sauce, cilantro, lime zest, and salt and puree until smooth.
- Store in the fridge in a tightly covered container for up to 2 weeks or freeze for up to a month.
- 1/4 cup cumin seeds
- 1/4 cup coriander seeds
- 1/4 cup fennel seeds
- 1/4 cup yellow mustard seeds
- 2 pasilla chiles, stemmed, seeded, deveined, and torn into small pieces
- 2 ancho chiles, stemmed, seeded, deveined, and torn into small pieces
- 1/2 cup dried whole oregano (preferably Mexican)
- 2 tablespoons onion powder
- 2 tablespoons garlic powder
- 1/4 cup Spanish paprika (pimento)
- Heat a dry skillet over medium-low heat.
- Pour in the cumin, coriander, fennel and mustard seeds along with the pieces of pasilla and ancho chiles. Toast, stirring constantly, until aromatic and just begins to smoke, about 3 minutes.
- Dump the mixture onto a plate and let it cool to room temperature.
- Grind to a fine powder in a spice grinder or clean coffee grinder.
- Transfer powder to a large bowl and add the oregano, onion powder, garlic powder and paprika. Stir well to combine.
- Store the adobo in an airtight container or resealable plastic bag in a cool, dark place for up to a month.
- 2 pounds boneless chicken thighs
- Kosher salt
- Fresh ground black pepper
- 1/2 cup Aarón’s Adobo
- 1/2 cup Garlic Chipotle Love
- 24 (4-inch) corn tortillas
- Canola oil, for frying
- Valentina hot sauce
- Cacique Crema Mexicana
- Pickled onions
- Cacique Queso Fresco, crumbled
- 3 limes, halved
- Season the chicken thighs with salt, pepper and Aarón’s adobo.
- Heat a grill or grill pan to medium-high heat.
- Cook the chicken for 4 to 5 minutes per side, until the chicken is cooked all the way through. Remove from heat and let cool.
- Once the chicken is cool enough to handle, use two forks to shred.
- Transfer to a bowl and toss with the Garlic Chipotle Love. Season with salt to taste.
- Place approximately 2 ounces of the shredded chicken into each tortilla, tightly roll and skewer through the middle. Continue to stack more flautas on each skewer until you have 3 to 4 on a single skewer.
- In a fryer, heat oil to 375 degrees.
- One at a time, carefully lower the skewered flautas into the oil and fry for approximately 3 to 4 minutes, until they are crispy and golden brown.
- Remove from fryer and let rest on a paper towel-lined plate to remove excess oil.
- Spread guacamole on the bottom of the plate.
- Carefully remove the flautas from the skewers and place on top of the guacamole.
- Drizzle the flautas with hot sauce, followed by Cacique Crema Mexicana and pickled onions.
- Top with crumbled Cacique Queso Fresco and garnish with cilantro and fresh squeezed lime juice.