“Fried” Chicken, Okra, and Tomato Corn Cakes, and Chipotle Peaches

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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Yield: 4 servings


For the chicken:

2 cups buttermilk

1 teaspoon paprika, divided

1 teaspoon garlic powder, divided

1 teaspoon onion powder, divided

1 teaspoon salt, divided

1 teaspoon black pepper, divided

4 medium boneless chicken breasts

1 cup all-purpose flour

2 cups panko bread crumbs

3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

Cilantro leaves (for garnish)

For the Corn Cakes:

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

1 cup chopped Vidalia onion

2 cups plain yellow corn meal

2 teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon salt

1 3/4 cups low-fat buttermilk (more if batter is too thick)

2 eggs

1/2 cup finely chopped sun-dried tomatoes

1 cup thinly sliced (about ¼ inch) fresh okra

2 tablespoons butter, melted

Vegetable oil

For the peaches:

1 teaspoon chopped and seeded chipotle peppers, rehydrated in hot water first

2 large ripe peaches, peeled, pitted. and cut into 1/2 cubes

2 teaspoons minced cilantro leaves


For the chicken:
1. In a medium bowl, whisk together buttermilk, 1/2 teaspoon paprika, 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder, 1/2 teaspoon onion powder, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Transfer chicken to bowl. Cover and refrigerate for 2 to 3 hours.

2. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. In a shallow dish, combine flour, 1/2 teaspoon paprika, 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder, 1/2 teaspoon onion powder, and 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.

3. In another shallow dish, combine bread crumbs, olive oil, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Using your fingers, mix oil into bread crumbs thoroughly. Transfer mixture to a small skillet and heat over medium high heat. Stirring continuously, cook bread crumbs for 3 to 4 minutes until golden brown. Remove from heat and return to shallow dish.

4. Remove chicken from buttermilk, wiping off excess. Reserve buttermilk.

5. Place a rack on a large baking sheet. Set up flour, buttermilk, breadcrumbs, and baking sheet in that order from right to left. Working one at a time, coat chicken breast in flour, dip in buttermilk, coat with bread crumbs, and place on baking sheet. Repeat with remaining breasts.

6. Transfer baking sheet to oven and bake for 20 to 30 minutes until internal temperature reaches 160 to 165 degrees. Cooking time may vary according to thickness of breasts.

For the Corn Cakes:
1. Heat olive oil in a small skillet over medium high heat. Saute onions in oil for 3 to 4 minutes until translucent. Remove from heat.

2. Whisk corn meal, baking powder, and salt together in a medium bowl. Add buttermilk and eggs and whisk until batter is lump-free. Stir in onions, tomatoes, and okra. Stir until well-combined. Add melted butter and stir to combine.

3. Heat about 1 to 2 teaspoons of vegetable oil in a small non-stick skillet over medium high heat. Ladle approximately 2/3 cup of batter to skillet, spreading to form a circle. Cook for 1 to 2 minutes until lightly browned. Using a large spatula, carefully flip cake and cook for 1 to 2 minutes. Remove from skillet and transfer to a plate. Cover with aluminum foil to keep warm. Repeat to create four corn cakes.

For the peaches:
Toss peaches, chipotle peppers, add cilantro together in a small bowl.

To assemble:
Place corn cake on plate. Top with chicken breast and chipotle peaches. Garnish with fresh cilantro leaves.

Adapted from southernboydishes.com