Guisado de Pollo (Chicken and Potato Stew) with Charred Corn Salad

Guisado de Pollo

Though I haven’t posted for a very long time, I have still been finding some tasty things to cook and making them.  I subscribed to Saveur on the iPad and their Mexican food issue had some really delicious things.  This chicken and potato stew also has pineapple and chipotle peppers in it, which makes for a really amazing range of flavor.  It’s easy and delicious.  We made it twice in one week.

The second time we made it, we put a really tasty corn salad on the side that I found in Food and Wine.  Tastes just like summer!

Guisado de Pollo


¼ cup canola oil
1 ½ lbs. boneless, skinless chicken thighs
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 small white onion, chopped
1 medium carrot, chopped
1 red bell pepper, stemmed, seeded, and finely chopped
1 cup finely chopped fresh or canned pineapple
1 tsp. ground cumin
1 tsp. dried thyme
6 cloves garlic, minced
2 canned chipotles in adobo sauce, finely chopped
1 jalapeño, quartered lengthwise
1 lb. Yukon gold potatoes, peeled, cut into ½” cubes
4 cups chicken stock
3 sprigs cilantro
1 (15-oz.) can whole peeled tomatoes in juice, crushed
2 tbsp. capers, rinsed
Juice of 1 lime


1. Heat oil in a 6-qt. saucepan over medium-high heat. Season chicken with salt and pepper, and working in batches, add to pan, and cook, turning once, until browned on both sides and cooked through, about 15 minutes. Transfer to a plate and let cool; using a fork, finely shred meat and set aside.

2. Return saucepan to heat, and add onion, carrot, and peppers; cook, stirring, until soft, about 8 minutes. Add pineapple, cumin, thyme, garlic, chipotles, and jalapeño, and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 2 minutes. Add reserved shredded chicken back to pan along with potatoes, stock, epazote, and tomatoes, and bring to a boil; reduce heat to medium-low, and cook, stirring occasionally, until potatoes are tender, about 30 minutes. Add capers and juice, and season with salt and pepper before serving.

The first time we made it, the capers were a little over-powering, particularly as leftovers, so on the second round, I dialed them back a bit.  Garnished the stew with sour cream, fresh cilantro, avocado and fresh grape tomatoes.

Charred Corn Salad

4 large ears of corn, shucked
Extra-virgin olive oil
Freshly ground pepper
1/2 small red onion, thinly sliced
2 1/2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
1 teaspoon pure maple syrup
1 jalapeño, seeded and thinly sliced
3 tablespoons torn mint leaves
3 tablespoons torn parsley leaves
3 tablespoons torn cilantro leaves

Heat a large grill pan. Brush the corn with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Grill over moderately high heat, turning, until crisp-tender, about 12 minutes. Let cool.
Meanwhile, in a small bowl, combine the onion and lime juice and let stand for 10 minutes. Stir in the syrup, jalapeño and 2 tablespoons of oil and season with salt and pepper.
Working in a large bowl, cut the kernels off the cobs in sections. Add the onion dressing and toss. Add the mint, parsley and cilantro and toss again. Serve warm.


Grilled New York Strip

Few things are better than reclaiming the backyard after the cold, rainy San Francisco winter.  After lots of rain and cold wind, temperatures this weekend reached a very rare 80 degrees in San Francisco.  The ramifications were far-reaching: flowers burst into bloom, more naked people than usual (believe me, it’s never the right ones) wandered the streets, true San Franciscans complained about the heat and dug into the recesses of their bathrooms for sunscreen, and the long-dormant grill called from the backyard to be ignited.

Grilled New York Strip


  1. New York Strip Steaks
  2. Williams-Sonoma Gray Sea Salt with Five Pepper Blend
  3. 1 medium shallot
  4. 1 bunch of parsley
  5. 3-4 Tbsp of finely chopped fresh thyme leaves
  6. Olive Oil


  1. Rub steaks with salt blend and leave at room temperature for at least 45 minutes.
  2. Combine diced shallots, finely chopped parsley and fresh thyme in a bowl and mix well.
  3. Preheat grill to 400.
  4. Grill steaks to desired temperature turning once or twice. (Keep in mind that steaks will continue to cook while they rest).
  5. Once steaks are done, remove from grill andcover with parsley, thyme, shallot mixture.  Drizzle with olive oil and tent with aluminum foil.  Allow to rest for 15 minutes.

Keep in mind that steaks are very lonely without a full-bodied red wine, potatoes in one form or another and vegetables.

MEAT TEMPERATURE HINT (thanks to the genius of my Dad):

To get steaks to the perfect temperature, do the following:

  1. Open your left hand with your fingers up but relaxed.
  2. Touch the meaty area below your thumb.  This is how a steak should feel if you want it rare.
  3. Touch the tip of your index finger and your thumb and press the meaty part again: medium rare
  4. Middle finger and thumb: Medium
  5. Ring finger and thumb: Medium well
  6. Pinky and thumb: Well done (otherwise known as jerky)