Monday, July 8, 2013

Puffy Chicken Tacos

Hola friends and bloggers! Today, we will be making some scrumptious tacos. These tacos are a specialty of San Antonio, TX. Anything that hails from my home away from home is fine by me. In fact, I can say that aside from San Antonio's rocking barbacoa tacos, the puffy tacos are pretty much "It" food. These tacos are what make Tex-Mex amazing.

On another note, this recipe is for spicy chicken, so if you have sensitive taste buds feel free to scope around on the right side in our archives to see if there's something not so spicy that you'd enjoy! I'm sure we've got a bit of everything for everyone. Now, I'm going to head into the kitchen and I hope you will join me. See you there!

Puffy Chicken Tacos
Serves 12

You will need:

  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2.5 pounds bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs 
  • Kosher salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 6 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 1 rib celery, finely chopped
  • 1 small carrot, finely chopped
  • 1 small red bell pepper, finely chopped
  • 3 cups chicken stock
  • 1 (14 ounce) can whole peeled tomatoes in juice, crushed by hand
  • 2 avocados, pitted, peeled, and mashed
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced 
  • Juice of 1 lime 
  • Canola oil, for frying
  • 3 cups masa harina 
  • 1.5 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened 
  • Shredded iceberg lettuce
  • diced tomato
  • shredded cheddar cheese

NOTE: you can find masa harina in your local Mexican food market, possibly Walmart, and definitely on


  1. Heat oil in an 8 quart saucepan over medium-high heat. 
  2. Season the chicken with salt and pepper, and add to the pan, skin side down. 
  3. Cook, turning once, until browned on both sides, about 8 minutes. Transfer the chicken to a plate, then set aside. 
  4. Add the garlic, onion, celery, carrot, and bell pepper to the saucepan, and cook, stirring until soft, about 20 minutes. 
  5. Add the stock and tomatoes, then return the chicken to the pan. Bring to a boil. 
  6. Reduce heat to medium-low, and cook until the chicken is very tender, about 1.5 hours. 
  7. Remove the chicken from the sauce, and let cool. 
  8. Reserve the sauce for another use. 
  9. Discard the skin and bones, and shred the chicken, then set aside. Meanwhile, combine the avocados, garlic, lime juice, salt and pepper in a bowl. 
  10. Chill the guacamole until ready to use, covering to avoid browning.
  11. Pour oil to a depth of 2 inches in a 6 quart Dutch oven and heat over medium-high heat until a deep-fry thermometer reads 375 degrees. Stir together the masa, butter, and 2.25 cups warm water in a bowl until dough forms. 
  12. Divide the dough into 12 pieces and shape each piece into a ball. Using a tortilla press or rolling pin, flatten each ball into a 6.5 inch disk. 
  13. Place 1 disk in the oil. 
  14. When it begins to puff, press the end of a metal spatula into the middle of the tortilla so that the tortilla bends into a taco shape. 
  15. Hold the spatula within the tortilla until the taco is golden brown and crisp, about 1.5 minutes. 
  16. Transfer the taco onto paper towels to drain, and repeat with the remaining tortillas. 
  17. Divide chicken and guacamole among the tacos, then top with lettuce, tomato, and cheese.
  18. Enjoy!

Thanks for joining us here at The Tasteful Texan. I'll be back again tomorrow, like usual with another exciting recipe for y'all. Until then, have a great Monday, and happy blogging to all!