Salsa verde con pollo

Yields enough for about 30 tamales

4 chicken breasts
1-2 carrots, roughly chopped
1-2 stalks of celery (optional)
1/2 onion, roughly chopped
1/2 Tbsp black peppercorns
2 cloves of garlic
1 tsp of salt (to add to the water)
4 cups or 1 liter of cold water

Place the chicken breasts (you could also use whole chicken cut up into pieces) in a big pot, along with chopped carrots, celery, onions, black peppercorns, and 2 cloves of garlic. Cover the chicken with water and boil it for about 50 minutes.

After the chicken is done, reserve the resulting broth by pouring it through a strainer into a large bowl.

While the chicken is boiling, work on the salsa verde:


5-6 tomatillos
2-3 jalapeños
1-2 cloves of garlic
1/2 of an onion, roughly chopped
Salt to taste

Peel the cáscara (papery skin) off of the tomatillos by starting from the back. Then place the peeled tomatillos in the bowl. Make sure you wash them after you peel them.

Ahhh! Bathed and ready to be boiled!

Next, boil the tomatillos, 2-3 jalapeños, 1-2 cloves of garlic (not pictured), and 1/2 of an onion (not pictured) for about 10 minutes. Then drain the tomatillos and other veggies. You can reserve the liquid to pour in the blender if the salsa is too thick. I didn't need it, though.

Place the boiled mixture in a blender, and add a few sprigs of cilantro and salt.

Blend the mixture for a few seconds, and now you have salsa verde! Make sure you taste the salsa to make sure you've added enough salt. I always forget to do that.


Vegetable oil
1/2 cup of the chicken broth (reserved from the boiled chicken)

Once the chicken is ready, shred it, and then pour in one capsful of vegetable oil in a skillet. Add the chicken and cook the chicken for about 2 minutes. Then add most of the salsa verde, reserving the rest for the tamales once they're done. If you forget and use up all the salsa, then you'll have to make more later. Cook the salsa and shredded chicken mixture for about 2-3 minutes, then add about 1/4-1/2 cup of chicken broth. Just don't make it too "liquidy". Reserve the rest of the chicken broth for the masa. You will need about 2-3 cups of it.

Now, you can just refrigerate this mixture, and make the rest of the tamales the next day, or you can keep chugging along with the rest of the tamal process the same day.