Chicken and Green Sauce

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This started out as a desperate search to make something for dinner.  I was visiting my mother in Tucson. I won’t go into detail about the expiration dates of most of the food in my mother’s refrigerator, but let’s just say that you would think she only shopped once a year.  After searching though the back of the fridge – I came across a container of green sauce that my mother had purchased from a local grocery store.  Zucchini from a neighbor, and in the freezer I found a bag of diced peppers and chicken thighs. It was dinner and I recreated the sauce and made an easy and delicious dish that I go back to all the time.

Chicken with Green Sauce

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  • 4 tomatillos – quartered
  • 1 medium white onion – diced
  • 2 pablano peppers – diced
  • 1 green bell pepper
  • 1 jalapeno (with or without seeds removed – your choice) quartered
  • 2 garlic cloves smashed
  • 1 bunch of cilantro (stalks and leaves washed)
  • 1 lime
  • 1 tablespoon
  • 6-8 chicken thighs
  • Zucchini (2 small) diced
  • Oregano
  • Bay leaf
  • Cumin
  • Chili powder
  • Salt and pepper



Preheat oven to 425


For the green sauce: Throw the quartered tomatillos in a bowl with the poblano peppers, garlic and ½ the onion. Toss with olive oil and the juice of ½ a lime. Spread on a rimmed pan and roast for 15 – 20 minutes. Mix the vegetables up every so often to ensure that everything browns evenly. As soon as everything gets soft and browned, remove from the oven and let cool.


Throw everything and the cilantro into a food processor and pulverize. Squeeze ½ lime and season with salt and pepper – adjusting until the sauce is blended.


Take the chicken thighs and trim and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Set aside


Sweat the remaining onion in a Dutch oven over medium high heat 8-10 minutes. When the onions are soft add the chicken in sprinkle with oregano, cumin and chili powder. Sauté chicken until slightly browned about another 8-10 minutes. Once the chicken is browned add in the diced zucchini. After 5 minutes add in the green sauce and a bay leaf. Simmer for about 15-20 minutes with the lid off, stirring occasionally to make sure everything cooks evenly and continually check the seasoning. Taste for seasoning and adjust for your taste. Squeeze the remaining lime and serve immediately. Best with warm flour tortillas or rice.

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