Main Dish

Mati's Tinga de Pollo Tostadas

Sunce Winery

1839 Olivet Road
Santa Rosa, CA 95401

  • RECIPE YEAR: 2015
  • RECIPE BY: Mati Jimenez
  • YIELD: Serves 12
  • PAIRS WELL WITH: 2013 Sunce Zinfandel, Dry Creek Valley

These chicken tostadas are a favorite from Mexico City. Most of the ingredients should be available in the Latin foods section of your local grocery store. If not, you can find them in a Mexican market.

  • 1 pound bone-in, skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 small garlic clove, unpeeled, plus 1 small garlic clove, minced
  • 1/4 white onion (left whole) plus 1 cup chopped white onions
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 3 tomatoes, cored, seeded and chopped
  • 4 teaspoons minced chipotle peppers in adobo sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon Mexican oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt, or to taste
  • 1 cup Mexican crema
  • 12 tortillas
  • Sriracha hot chili sauce for serving
  • Sliced white onion for serving
  • 1 avocado, pitted, peeled and cut into slivers
  • 2 cups shredded or chopped iceberg lettuce
  • 1/4 cup crumbled queso fresco or cotija cheese
In a large saucepan, submerge the chicken breasts in enough water to cover them. Add the bay leaf, unpeeled garlic clove and the 1/4 onion and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to medium-low, cover and simmer until the chicken is cooked through, about 20 minutes. Transfer the chicken to a bowl. When it is cool enough to handle, shred the meat with your fingers or a fork, discarding the bones. Set aside.

In a large fry pan over medium-high heat, warm the vegetable oil. Add the chopped onions and cook, stirring frequently, until translucent, 3 to 5 minutes. Stir in the minced garlic and cook until aromatic, 15 to 30 seconds. Add the tomatoes and cook, stirring occasionally, until the pieces break down and become a thick, chunky paste, about 5 minutes.

Stir in the chicken, then add the chipotle peppers, oregano, cumin, allspice, cinnamon, thyme and broth. Season with the 3/4 teaspoon salt, or to taste. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat, cover and simmer to thicken slightly and marry the flavors, about 10 minutes. Adjust the seasoning with salt.

To serve, slather a generous layer of crema on each tortilla, then make a zigzag of Sriracha sauce. Add a few spoonfuls of the chicken mixture (tinga de pollo), some onion slices and 2 avocado slivers. Top with the lettuce and cheese. You can experiment and do this in almost any order you’d like. To make these tostadas heartier, after the crema, add a little layer of frijoles.