Leftover rotisserie chicken, on the left, is turned into a spicy Mexican tostada, on the right. (Photo: Donna Yen)
Last week, I showed you how to flip your leftover mashed potatoes into cheesy bacon pancakes. This week I turn the remains of my rotisserie chicken into a spicy Mexican tostada. And when I say spicy, I mean the kind of spicy where you can feel the heat lingering in the back of your throat just seconds after one bite. This chicken is no joke and it’s all because of one special ingredient.
Before I reveal the special ingredient, let’s talk about rotisserie chickens. They are the best thing that’s ever happened to grocery stores. Maybe it’s the smell of roasted chickens or the hot lamps that warm them, but any time I come out of the the chilly dairy aisle and walk by piles of juicy roast chicken, one always magically appears in my cart. When I’ve taken one of these delicious birds home, I devour it by picking juicy pieces of meat straight off the bone and tuck the rest away in the fridge.
Ingredients for a spicy Mexican tostada. (Photo: Donna Yen)
When I’m ready to put the rest of the chicken to use, I shred it up and throw it into a pan with an ingredient that will change your life. I learned of this special sauce last year after trying a chicken dish my sister had made. It was smoky, packed with flavor, and had a strong kick. The secret ingredient, she said, was this can of chipotle peppers packed in adobo sauce. Many brands make this can of peppers so you can easily find them in the international aisle of your grocery store.
Chipotle Peppers in Adobo Sauce can be found in the international aisle of your grocery store. (Photo: Donna Yen)
When you open the can you’ll see red peppers swimming in a dark smoky sauce — don’t be scared! You’ll need to prep the chipotle peppers before you can use them. Deseed each pepper over a small metal strainer that will catch the seeds. I did about four, but if you do more, I’m going to warn you now, this stuff is so, sooo spicy. It’s so spicy that my eyes watered from the fumes while I was taking out the seeds; hurts so bad, but tastes so good. After my crying session was over and the peppers were ready, I added them to the shredded chicken along with the remaining adobo sauce from the can. To give it more flavor and substance I added sautéed onions and garlic to the mix.
Sautéed onions, garlic, shredded rotisserie chicken, and a spicy kick of chipotle adobo peppers. (Photo: Donna Yen)
Now that the chicken topping is done, it’s all about dressing up your tostada just the way you like it. For those of you who’ve never had a tostada, I like to describe it as a cross between a taco, nacho, and pizza. The base is a whole crispy tortilla: Just imagine a big ol’ chip that gets a spread of mashed beans and layered with cheese, lettuce, and some type of meat topping. I used refried black beans, radishes, and cilantro in mine but the possibilities are endless. All together this dish took less than 20 minutes from start to finish and it’s a lot of fun to assemble, not to mention a great way to switch up your Taco Tuesday. Give this recipe a try and impress your friends or family. No one needs to know it started as leftovers — we’ll keep that between you and me.
Spicy chicken chipotle tostadas made by topping crispy tortillas with refried black beans, leftover rotisserie chicken, radishes, and queso fresco. (Photo: Donna Yen)
Spicy Chicken Chipotle Tostadas
Makes about 6 tostadas
2 tablespoons of chipotle peppers roughly chopped (about 4 peppers) and all the adobo sauce from a 7 oz. can of chipotle peppers in adobo sauce
1 onion, thinly sliced
1 garlic, minced
2 cups of shredded chicken
1 teaspoon olive oil
1 16 oz. can of refried black beans
1 package of crispy tostada shells
1 bunch of radishes, thinly sliced
1 bunch of cilantro, chopped
1 pack of queso fresco, crumbled
Sauté the onions in oil for 4 minutes on medium-high heat in a pan. Then add chopped garlic and sauté for about 2 minutes. Add your shredded chicken, chile peppers, and adobo sauce and cook for another 2 minutes until the chicken is hot all the way through. Season with salt to taste.
Reheat the black beans in the microwave and spread it over one crispy tortilla. Top it with the chipotle chicken, a few slices of radishes, sprinklings of crumbled queso fresco, and garnish with fresh cilantro. Serve with fresh squeeze of lime and enjoy!
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