CHRISTMAS DINNER WEEK: MOLCAJETES

12/14/2010 12:00 AM

12/14/2010 9:33 AM

You could serve ham and turkey again, but didn't you just do that in November? This week, we'll give you some main course recipes that will make your Christmas dinner delicious, special and nontraditional. Today's recipe is a Mexican favorite that's easy to make and more fun than fajitas. Although this dish is traditionally served in the stone bowl from which it takes its name, this recipe calls for a serving dish that can be placed in the oven and heated.

INGREDIENTS

Vegetable oil

8 oz. chicken breast, sliced fajita-style

16 shrimp, peeled

Salt

1 cup each: chopped onion and tomato

1 cup tomatillo salsa (from recipe below)

Garnish:

4 green onions

1/2 avocado, cut into fourths

2 tomatoes, sliced

1/4 cup chopped onion

1/4 cup chopped cilantro

1 cup shredded cheese

Tomatillo salsa:

1 1/2 chile de arbos (dried chiles)

2 cans (11 oz. each) tomatillos, with liquid from one can reserved

1/4 onion, chopped

1/4 bunch cilantro, chopped

1 large clove garlic, chopped

DIRECTIONS

Place oven-safe serving dish in 250-degree oven. Make tomatillo salsa by following recipe below. Heat to simmering and pour 1 cup into serving dish; return serving dish to oven.

Heat vegetable oil in skillet set over medium heat. Saute chicken and shrimp until done; season to taste with salt.

Remove mixture from skillet and add to serving dish in oven.

Add a bit of vegetable oil to skillet and quickly saute 1 cup onion and 1 cup tomato until onion is soft. Add to serving dish.

Lay green onions, avocado slices and tomato slices on top of meat and vegetables. Top with chopped onion, cilantro and cheese.

Serve with warm tortillas.

TO MAKE TOMATILLO SALSA:

Toast chile de arbos in skillet until fragrant. Combine with other ingredients in a blender or food processor; process until well blended.

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