Chef Joe Cipro’s Recipe of the Week.

Chicken Tostada

Ingredients (serves 4)
2 chicken breasts
8 corn tortillas
1/2 red onion (sliced thin)
1 c cheddar cheese
4 c chicken stock
2 avocados
2 dried ancho chilis (seeded)
1 dried jalapeño (seeded)
2 Tbsp tomato paste
1 can black beans (drained and rinsed)
1 clove of garlic
1 Tbsp soy sauce
1 bunch cilantro (washed)
1/2 cup picked flat parsley (washed)
1/4 cucumber
1 cup Greek yogurt
2 limes (juiced)
2 c chopped Bibb lettuce
1/4 c sugar
1 bay leaf
2 Tbsp white vinegar
Water
Ground cumin (to taste)
1 tsp cinnamon
Salt and pepper (to taste)
1 fresh jalapeño (seeded)

Directions
Turn on oven to 300 degrees. Place one cup of chicken stock, dried and seeded chilis, soy sauce, tomato paste, garlic, one tablespoon of cumin, one teaspoon cinnamon, salt, and pepper in a microwave safe bowl, cover with plastic, and cook one-and-a-half minutes on high. Let sit covered for five minutes, then purée in a blender.

Mix the purée with three cups of chicken stock. Cook the chicken breasts in a three to four-inch deep braising pan with a lid. Cook at 300 for three hours with the lid on.

Meanwhile, bring the sugar, white vinegar, one tablespoon of salt, and one cup of water to a boil. Once at a boil, stir and make sure the sugar is dissolved, then add a handful of cilantro and the juice of half a lime, and pour the hot liquid over the sliced red onion. Allow that mixture to cool in the fridge.

While your pickled onions cool, place the cucumber, a handful of cilantro, the parsley, half-cup yogurt, juice of half a lime, half an avocado, and half seeded fresh jalapeño in the blende, and purée until smooth.

Once the chicken is cooked, remove it from the braising pan and put into a mixing bowl covered with plastic wrap.

Now, reduce the braising liquid by half and strain the reduced liquid through a sieve into the bowl with the braised chicken, saving a quarter-cup to mix with your black beans. Pull the tender chicken apart with a fork to incorporate with the sauce.

Finally, in a food processor, pulse half the can of beans with the quarter-cup of braising liquid. Add the other half of the can to the mixture after pulsing.

To assemble your tostada, turn the oven up to 350, place the corn tortillas on a sheet tray, and toast each side three minutes. Once the tortillas are toasted, add a large spoonful of the bean purée on each and spread evenly to the edge of the tortilla. Follow that with a generous spoonful of the pulled chicken and a sprinkling of cheddar cheese.

The tostadas will go back in the oven for three minutes to melt the cheese. When they come out, finish with your shredded lettuce, sliced avocado, pickled onion, yogurt, and your cucumber cilantro dressing.