While this is not a food blog, one of the most frequent questions I’ve gotten over the years about living in Mexico is if I’ve become used to the food here. So, I thought it would be fun to occasionally share what I’m cooking. There is deep connection through food. It tells people so much about your life and culture. It is one of the most fundamental blocks of survival and connection. So, enjoy! And let me know if you try out any of my fake, invented recipes.

Lechón, cochinita pibil, mole, tinga….I love them all. However, in this house, I’m the kitchen lady which means we don’t really consume intense Mexican food on a regular basis. Instead, similar to some swanky place uptown (just kidding!) my gastronomical style can only be described as a fusion. Drawing from what I’ve learned from the incredible women across the south of Mexico, as well as a childhood full of homey, North American goodness and a hefty sprinkling of Lebanese dishes, anything I produce would make a purist blanch in horror. I attempt to take the best of each cuisine and push my kids’ taste buds into an adult world of flavor.

Aside from that, I do live in Mexico and I dare say, a very unique part of the country. There are so many ingredients I simply cannot find. Yet, there are so many others that are abundant beyond belief. It is a fantastic challenge to read a recipe or imagine a dish and invent the steps, twist the ingredients, tweak expectation to arrive at a destiny previously unreachable.

The dish I’m going to share today is a very simple one, but a great example of innovation and fusion.

I’ve called it Stove Roasted Chicken because well, that’s exactly what it is. In the warmth of the south, there are many days, indeed, whole months that I avoid using the oven. This method gives you a similar result to a roasted bird but without all the excess heat radiating out into the house.

The store has only had bone-in whole chicken breasts with the skin for the last few weeks. Instead of going through the effort of undressing the the slippery fellows, I decided to use as-were.

This is really more of a method, an idea, than a tried and true recipe. It is flexible, you have the power to make it do what ever you want. Add some chili powder. Use coconut oil. Make some thighs. Make it yours!

Stove Roasted Chicken

  • 2-3 whole chicken breasts with bone and skin
  • Whole salt
  • Ground black pepper
  • Butter
  • Olive oil
  • Deep soup pot with a lid

Wash the meat and pat dry. Sprinkle generously with salt and pepper. Let rest at least 30 minutes to allow salt to diffuse

Ugly bag is salt, straight from the ocean at Las Coloradas, Yucatán. Salt snob right here.

When ready to cook, pour a good splash of oil and add a half stick of butter or so to the pot. Place on high, allow oil to shimmer and butter to melt.

You want both. The high temperature of the oil and the flavor from the butter.

Using kitchen tongs, add the breasts, skin down, into the fat base. Put the lid on and let cook on high for about 15-20 minutes. You know your pot and stove. Adjust accordingly.

Three was a little tight at the beginning until they started to shrink. Two worked better.

Flip over to underside 10-15 minutes, then each side for about 5 each, replacing lid after each flip to ensure maximum steam. Finish up by crisping the skin just a bit more or to your preferred taste.

Crispy skin!

Cover the meat and make up a gravy in your preferred method. Personally, I start with a roux, add the drippings, then some broth. I’ve been known to lighten it with wine vinegar, deepen with black pepper, and accidentally adding too much flour, producing enough gravy for the navy.

Serve with….whatever you want plus all that extra gravy in little soup bowls and a basket of dinner rolls for some extreme dipping.

3 thoughts on “Penelope’s Kitchen: Stove Roasted Chicken

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