Chicken Marinated in Garlic, Chiles, and Citrus Juices

This Mexican chile pepper is called “Chilaca” when used fresh. In California the Poblano chile is often called Pasilla. Since most of these are bought and distributed from California this mislabeling often carries over into the supermarkets nationwide causing alot of confusion. This chile is very mild and is usually consumed in the dry form to make the famous Mexican ‘mole’ sauces.

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1/2 cup olive oil
1/3 cup orange juice
1/4 cup fresh lime juice
1/4 cup ground pasilla chilies*
2 tablespoons ground ancho chilies*
1 tablespoon minced canned chipotle chilies**
6 garlic cloves, crushed
1 onion, chopped
3 2 3/4- to 3-pound chickens, halved, backbone removed


Whisk oil, orange and lime juices, ground and canned chilies and garlic in 15x10x2-inch baking dish to blend. Mix in onion. Add chicken halves and turn to coat. Cover and refrigerate at least 4 hours or overnight, turning occasionally.

Prepare barbecue (medium heat). Remove chicken halves from marinade. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Grill until chicken is cooked through, turning occasionally, about 40 minutes.

*Ground pasilla and ancho chilies are found in the spice section of some supermarkets. If unavailable, use dried pasilla and ancho chilies, sold in Latin American markets, specialty foods stores and some supermarkets. Seed and stem chilies and finely grind in spice grinder, blender or coffee grinder.

**Chipotle chilies canned in a spicy tomato sauce, sometimes called adobo, are available at Latin American markets, specialty foods stores and some supermarkets.