- 3-4 dried guajillo or red New Mexico chili peppers, stemmed and seeded
- 2 1/2 cups chicken stock
- 1 cup organic ketchup
- 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons cider vinegar, divided
- 2 tablespoons dark brown sugar, packed
- 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
- 2 tablespoons dark amber maple syrup
- 2 shots Mezcal or other tequila of your choice
- 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped, divided
- 3 limes, divided
- 1 small organic orange
- 4 cups shredded Poached Chicken Breasts, recipe follows
- 1/3 cup plus 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil (EVOO), divided
- 4 slices smoky bacon, chopped
- 1 red onion, halved; 1 half chopped and the other half whole
- 1 can baked beans (28 ounces), such as Bush's
- 1/4 cup steak sauce, such as Lea and Perrins Thick Classic Worcestershire Sauce
- 2 teaspoons coarsely ground black pepper
- 1 small red cabbage (1 pound), finely shredded
- Kosher salt
- 8 large flour tortillas
- 12 ounces sharp white cheddar cheese
For the poached Chicken Breasts:
- 4 whole bone-in, skin-on chicken breasts (for all white meat) or 3 whole 4-pound chickens (for a mix of white and dark meat)
- 1 tablespoon whole black peppercorns
- 8 cloves garlic, smashed
- 4 large bay leaves
- 4 carrots, coarsely chopped
- 4 stalks celery, coarsely chopped
- 2 lemons, sliced
- 2 onions, quartered
- An herb bundle of fresh parsley, rosemary and thyme, tied with kitchen string
- Kosher salt
Toast the chili peppers in a saucepan over medium-high heat, pressing them flat with a metal spatula and turning occasionally, 2-3 minutes. Add the stock and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook until the chili peppers are tender, 15-20 minutes. Puree the chili peppers and stock in a food processor, then return the mixture to the pan. Add the ketchup, 2 tablespoons vinegar, brown sugar, Worcestershire sauce, maple syrup, tequila and 2 garlic cloves. Grate enough zest from the limes and orange to make 1 tablespoon each; add to the pan along with the juice of 1 lime and the orange. Reduce the heat to a low boil and cook for 20 minutes. Add the chicken and stir to coat with the sauce.
Meanwhile, heat 1 tablespoon EVOO in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add the bacon and cook until browned. Add the chopped onion and the the remaining 2 garlic cloves and cook until soft, 3-4 minutes. Stir in the beans and cook until heated through. Stir in the steak sauce and pepper.
Combine the juice of the remaining 2 limes and the remaining 1/4 cup vinegar in a large bowl. Grate the remaining onion half into the bowl and whisk in the remaining 1/3 cup EVOO. Add the cabbage and toss to combine. Season with salt and pepper. Drain the slaw before using.
Char the tortillas for 30 seconds on each side. Place some of the chicken mixture on the edge of each tortilla, top with cheddar, beans and slaw, then tuck in the sides of the tortilla and roll up tightly.
Cook's Note: The chicken can be refrigerated in the barbecue sauce for a make-ahead meal. Reheat over medium heat, stirring. The beans and the slaw can be refrigerated separately until ready to use.
Put the chicken in a very large stockpot or divide between two pots, if necessary. Add the peppercorns, garlic, bay leaves, carrots, celery, lemons, onions and herb bundle and sprinkle with salt. Add enough water to cover the chicken. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to low and cook at a rolling simmer for 1 1/2 hours. Remove the chicken from the liquid and let cool. Strain the stock. (You should have 5-6 quarts stock.) Remove the skin and bones from the chicken, and shred the meat using your hands or two forks.