Chipotle Chicken Fajitas with Creamy Black Bean Spread

Morita chiles are red, fully mature Chipotles. This gives them a unique, medium – hot smokey flavor which is popular in many Southwestern dishes. These can be added to sauces (including Mole) to add smokey flavor and maintain the red color of the sauces. These peppers are about 2-4 inches in length, 1 inch in width, and have a deep brick reddish brown color. The word Chipotle translated to smoked chile. Consider the Chipotle a 6.5 on a scale of 1-10 (10 being the hottest). Scoville heat units 7,000-25,000.

Suggested Use:
Use Morita in enchilada sauces, chili, stews, barbecue ribs, and corn bread. Their smoky quality combines well with poultry, meats and fall squash.

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For the chicken:
1 clove garlic, minced
1 chipotle pepper (rehydrated in hot water), minced
1 teaspoon pepper soaking liquid
Juice of 1 lime
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon salt
Freshly ground pepper
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts

For the black bean spread:
2 teaspoons olive oil
2 scallions, white and green parts chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 jalapeño pepper, minced
1 cup cooked black beans, drained and rinsed
2 tablespoons sour cream or plain yogurt
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon cumin
Small palmful of fresh cilantro (about 1 tablespoon)
Juice of 1/2 lime

For the fajitas:
3 teaspoons olive oil
1 small green bell pepper, sliced into thin strips
1 small red bell pepper, sliced into thin strips
1 small onion, sliced thin
Salt and pepper
Flour tortillas
Cilantro, for serving
Lime, for serving


Serves 2 to 4.

First, marinate the chicken. Combine the garlic, chipotle pepper, liquid, lime juice, cumin, salt, and pepper in a bowl and stir to combine. Put the chicken breasts in a shallow dish or pie plate, pour the marinade over, and allow to sit for about an hour at room temperature. Flip them once or twice to make sure all surfaces of the chicken are well-coated with the marinade.

While the chicken is marinating, prepare the black bean spread and cook the peppers and onions. For the spread, heat the olive oil over medium heat in a skillet. Add the scallions, garlic, and jalapeño, and cook until soft but not brown, about 3 minutes. Transfer the mixture to a food processor. Add the beans and all remaining ingredients. Process until smooth. Taste and add more salt or lime juice as needed. If the spread seems too thick, add water 1 tablespoon at a time until creamy. Set aside until needed.

From To cook the peppers and onions, heat 3 teaspoons of olive oil over medium-high heat in a skillet (the same used for the black bean spread is fine). Add the peppers and onions along with salt and pepper. Cook until the peppers and onions are as soft as you’d like and a bit charred on the edges, 8 to 10 minutes total. Remove from heat and set aside. Once the chicken has marinated, heat a grill pan over high heat and brush with vegetable oil. Turn on a kitchen fan or open a window in case the chicken gets smoky as it cooks. Lay the chicken breasts in the pan and pour the marinade over top. Cook the chicken for about 5-8 minutes on each side until cooked through. Thinner chicken breasts will cook more quickly than thick ones. Let the cooked chicken breasts rest on a cutting board tented in foil for 5 minutes. Slice into thick strips. To assemble the fajitas, spoon some black bean spread onto a tortilla and top with chicken, peppers, onions, a squeeze of lime, and a sprinkle of cilantro leaves. Leftovers will keep refrigerated for up to a week.