Ancho Chile-Red Wine and Grape Roasted Chicken and Quinoa

Ancho (Ahn-cho) Chile (Capsicum Annum) means Wide Chile Pepper. This chile ranges from 3 – 4 on a heat scale of 1 to 10. An Ancho is the dried form of a Poblano Pepper and often is mislabeled as a Pasilla or Mulato Pepper. Anchos have sweet fruity flavor with hints of cherry, prune, and fig. Anchos, combined with the Pasilla and Guajillo, form the Holy Trinity of chiles used to prepare the traditional mole sauces. Scoville heat units are 1,000 to 3,000.

Suggested Use:
Anchos are great in salsa, soups, enchilada and any sauce needing mild heat and chile flavor. Chopped, pureed or ground, they can be added directly to your recipes.

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For the Ancho Chile-Red Wine Grape sauce:
2-1/2-pounds red, seedless grapes
1 bottle red wine
2 large, dried Ancho chiles
10 sprigs fresh thyme
1 tablespoon unsalted butter

For the chicken:
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1 large, roughly chopped shallot
2 small garlic cloves
1/2 cup reduced Ancho Chile-Red Wine Grape sauce (from above — see recipe instructions)
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
Freshly ground black pepper
3-3/4-pound whole, cut-up chicken, skin-on, bone-in

For the quinoa:
1-1/2 cups dry qunioa:
1/2 cup reduced Ancho Chile-Red Wine Grape sauce (from above — see recipe instructions)
2-1/2 cups chicken stock
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper


Serving Size: Serves 4

For the Ancho Chile-Red Wine Grape sauce:
In a large sauce pot, add the grapes and dried Ancho chiles to the wine. Place the pot over high heat and bring to a boil. Then remove the pot from the heat, cover, and let it sit for at least 20 minutes.

Remove the chiles from the pot and remove the stems and seeds. Return them to the pot and place over medium-low heat for about 15 minutes. Then use a immersion blender to blend the sauce about half way, leaving some of the grapes whole.

Add the thyme sprigs, turn the heat to low and simmer to reduce it by about 1/3. This should take about 30 minutes.

Remove the thyme sprigs, add the butter and season to taste with salt and pepper.

For the chicken:
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

Add the butter, shallot, garlic cloves, 1/2 cup of the reduced Ancho Chile-Red Wine Grape sauce, and salt to a food processor fitted with the blade attachment. Blend until it’s a smooth mixture and season to taste with pepper.

Now add the butter mixture under and on top of the skin of the chicken pieces, and place them in a large shallow baking pan (about 9 X 13 X 2-inches).

Roast in the preheated 375 degree F oven just until the chicken is cooked through, about 45 minutes. Baste the chicken about halfway through with the juices and melted compound butter at the bottom of the pan.

For the quinoa:
While the chicken is roasting, in a medium-sized sauce pot, mix the quinoa with another 1/2-cup of the reduced Ancho Chile-Red Wine Grape sauce and the stock. Bring it to a boil, then reduce the heat to low, cover, and cook until it’s tender and all of the liquid has been absorbed, 15 to 20 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Serve the chicken over the quinoa and add a bit more of the sauce.