This is my take on a Peruvian classic, Augadito de Pollo, one of my favourite winter dishes which is too hearty to be called a soup but too delicate to be called stew. Let’s think of of it as a soupy chicken and rice stew and the fact that it’s considered a hangover cure in Peru doesn’t hurt it’s street cred either. If you don’t want to mess with the crispy chicken skin or the black rice, by all means, skip the skin part and just don’t make any black rice because it’s still delicious without those two things. You can remove the chicken and discard the bones AND the skin before throwing the meat back into the broth – you are only losing that delicious, salty crunch of the chicken skin but all the flavour of the actual stew will be just as delicious. Okay, I said that for the lazy people but honestly, do the crispy chicken skin thing – it will change your life.
The chicken, itself, is not infused – you will make a hot sauce that you will then dizzle on to each bowl. If you use my method for infusing olive oil you will be using an oil that is approx 13 1/4 mg of THC per tbls, so that is how I have calculated the strength of the Aji Limo Crema. If you want it stronger, make a double batch of the crema and give everyone 2 tbls each for a 10mg THC serving. This Aji Limo Crema is a delicious hot sauce and can be used for anything, not just the Aguadito.
*As always, with home infusions, the THC levels are approximate and usually a bit weaker than you think, which is always a good thing
If you don’t have an Instant Pot, first of all, my sympathies and second of all, you can make it in a pot on the stove but you should cut the liquid back to about 6 cups and you will need to simmer it for about 45 minutes before removing the chicken (to remove the meat and discard the bones) and then another 15 minutes after you return the meat to the pot with the rice.
Aguadito de Pollo with Infused Aji Limo Crema
Makes approx 2 litres/quarts or about 6 servings
2 poblano chilis, seeded and roughly chopped
3 scallions, roughly chopped
2 cloves garlic, peeled and smashed
1 to 2 tbls Aji Amarillo paste
2 heaping cups of washed and roughly chopped cilantro
approx 1/4 cup water
6 chicken thighs – with bone and skin preferred
2 tbls canola oil
4 cups chicken stock
3 cups water
2 tsp cumin
3/4 cup or one rice cup of basmati rice
pinch kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
I cup of frozen peas
Aji Limo Crema 6 tbls Aji Limo Crema is approx 13 mg THC or approx 5mg per tbls
2 tbls aji amarillo paste
1.5 tbls lime juice
pinch kosher salt
whisk together the aji amarillo paste and oil and until completely blended and then add the lime juice and salt.
Cannabis Infused Aji crema
*Crispy Chicken Skin
**cooked black rice – optional
Throw the poblanos, scallions, garlic, cilantro and a bit of water in the blender and puree. Add just enough water to get it going – 1/4 cup should be about the maximum needed but don’t worry if it’s a bit more.
If you are going to do the crispy chicken skin, remove it and set aside. If not, just leave it on the thighs. Salt and pepper the chicken pieces.
Preheat the Instant Pot (or the saute function on your brand of electric pressure cooker) and when it’s hot, add the chicken thighs, flesh side down (or skin side down if you are leaving the skin on). Brown the chicken and remove from the pot.
Scrape the green cilantro puree into the hot chicken fat and cook that , stirring frequently, for about 4 or 5 minutes, until it turns a really deep green. Pour in the four cups of chicken stock and then put the 3 cups of water into the blender and give it a good shake so that you don’t waste any of that green puree and pour that into the pot too, mix in the cumin. Put the chicken meat in the pot along with 1/2 cup of basmati rice, lock the lid in (make sure the vent is closed) and program it for 15 minutes at High Pressure.
When the time is up, do a quick release and with tongs, remove the chicken thighs and set aside until they are cool enough to handle. Add the frozen peas and put the lid back on so the peas can heat up in the hot soup while you wait for the meat to cool off.
Remove the meat from the bones (discard the bones and if you skipped the crispy skin, remove and discard the skin too) and shred it up roughly before adding it back into the broth.
To serve, if using the black rice, add a scoop to each bowl, cover with soup, sprinkle a bit more cilantro over the top and some sliced scallions and top each bowl with 1 tbls of the Aji Limo Crema, a piece or two of crispy chicken skin and a couple of lime wedges on the side. If your soup seems too thick, add some more chicken broth and if you reheat the next day, you will absolutely have to do that, as the rice absorbs more broth the longer it sits in the fridge.
*Crispy Chicken Skin
Preheat the oven to 375F
Put a piece of parchment on a baking sheet.
take the reserved chicken skin and spread it out on a cutting board. Slice each skin into two or three strips. Lay the strips out on the parchment lined backing sheet, sprinkle them generously with kosher salt and freshly ground pepper. Lay another pice of parchment on top and then cover it with a second baking try to weigh the skins down and keep them from curling.
Bake in the middle of the oven for about 45 to 50 minutes until they are totally crispy and brown. Transfer the skins to paper towel to drain. They can be left at room temperature for 2 or 3 hours
**Cook 1 cup of black rice separately and set it aside. I do this in my rice cooker while the soup is cooking but you can do it before hand ,up to a day in advance. Cook it the same way you would cook basmati rice.
When you are ready to serve, add a scoop of black rice to each bowl – if you cook the black rice in the actual soup, it will ruin the beautiful, vibrant green colour and turn it into delicious but hideous looking dark grey sludge. Trust me on this one.