Mexico is one of my definite bucket-list travel destinations! The history, culture, beaches and the FOOD. While I haven’t yet got my flight tickets to see the beaches of Cancun, food trucks in Mexico City and the Mayan ruins, I can still do a trip to Mexico – in my kitchen!
‘Flautas de pollo‘ is a recipe that takes you straight to a taste journey to Mexico with little effort, and without airport waiting times!
Why Mexican food?
I was 17 when I moved to California to spend a high school year there as an exchange student. This was when I was introduced to the Mexican culture and food for the first time, as I lived one year with a Mexican family. As overwhelming as it was, I see this experience having had a huge impact on my life. And my food cravings.
Dishes are normally built around corn tortillas, rice, some type of meat, different tasty salsas with chile and vegetables such as tomato, onion, lime and cilantro. There are also frijoles, chorizo, tamales, mole, chicharron… Most of it is gluten-free, so it’s also effortless as a coeliac (careful with mole and tamales which sometimes include gluten).
First rule: Never ask a Mexican if food is spicy or not, because they always say “no pica” = “it’s not spicy at all!”, although it is. You can always choose a milder version or leave the hot sauce out, but you’ll miss the best part. You can build your tolerance, because chile is a fire that you get hooked on, and soon you’ll be craving some chile sauce to all your foods!
Prepare your own Mexican food
The Mexican food trend is definitely growing, so it looks like I’m not the only one obsessed with it! The prices are still quite high at a restaurant, so if you want to eat it more often, why don’t you cook it at home?
Flautas are easy to prepare, don’t require many ingredients, and make a great dinner or lunch!
What do you need?
- 200 g chicken boneless, skinned
- 10 corn tortillas
- 2 dl Salsa Verde, f.ex La Costeña
- 3-4 tablespoons Creme fraiche (nata fresca) or cream
- Fresh cheese or Mexican cheese if you can get it
- Sunflower oil for frying
- Kitchen paper
How to make it?
1. Cook the chicken first. Depending on the piece of chicken meat that you have you can cook it either by boiling it in the water for 30 min with a dash of salt, or cook it in the oven in 175 C for 30 min with just a sprinkle of salt on the top. When the chicken is ready, let it cool down and either cut it into small pieces or pull the pieces like when preparing pulled pork. The meat should be soft and easy to put inside the tortilla.
2. Next chop the salad. I added some tomatoes and cucumber on mine, but you can leave them out too.
3. Make sure you have the chopped salad, creme fraiche, crumbled fresh cheese, and the green sauce ready. The flautas are best served right after cooking, so when you have everything else ready and waiting, you can build up the plates quickly.
Heat up the green sauce in the microwave or in the kettle.
Place a plate with kitchen paper on it next to your frying pan, where you can place the hot flautas.
4. Heat the corn tortillas just 5 seconds in the microwave so that they soften up and are easier to roll. Take one and put chicken inside of it. Only put chicken so that you can still roll it without the tortilla breaking. Roll it and leave it to wait the “seam” down. When you have made all the 10 flautas, heat up the sunflower oil in the frying pan. You need about 0,5 dm layer of oil, enough to cover the base of the pan, but not too much either.
When the oil is heated enough, place the flauta carefully, the seam side facing down, to the oil. As the tortilla fries, the seam of the roll closes and your tortilla will not break. You can fry 3-4 at the same time. When the other half is golden brown, flip it over using a fork. When the other side is also fried, pick the flauta up from the oil and place it on the plate covered with kitchen paper to suck out the extra oil.
5. When you’re done with frying, prepare the plate. Place 3 flautas on the plate, preferably when they’re still a bit hot. Put on top the cream or creme fraiche, salsa verde, salad and the fresh cheese. Eat fast so they don´t get soggy!
Special mention! Thank you Yessica, my favorite Mexican girl, for teaching me how to prepare them!