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Mojo-Marinated Chicken Quinoa Bowl with Spinach, Plantains, Black Beans, and Mojo Crema


Cooking instructions

  1. Mojo Sauce: add all ingredients to a blender and purée until smooth. Taste and adjust seasoning, adding more salt, vinegar or honey as needed. The sauce should be loose but not thin and runny. Reserve ½ cup of the sauce and set aside. 
  2. Place the chicken in a shallow baking dish. Pour the remaining sauce all over the chicken and toss to coat evenly. Cover with plastic wrap and set on the refrigerator for at least one hour, up to overnight. 
  3. Mojo Crema: In a small bowl, mix reserved ½ cup of mojo sauce with the sour cream and season with salt and lime juice to taste. 
  4. Chicken Thighs: Preheat the oven to 375˚F (190˚C). Remove the chicken from the refrigerator and transfer to a sheet tray, wiping off as much excess marinade as you can. Let sit out at room temperature for about 20 minutes. Place chicken in the oven to bake for 18-22 minutes, until chicken is cooked through and reaches 165˚F (74˚C). Let the chicken breast rest for about 5 minutes before transferring to a cutting board and chopping into bite-size pieces.
  5. Plantains: Pour about ½-inch of oil into a large, high-walled skillet and set over medium high. Once oil is hot, place 1 slice of plantain in the oil. If it bubbles rapidly then the oil is ready. If not, remove the plantain and continue to let the oil heat up and try again. 
  6. Working in batches, carefully place half the plantains in the hot oil and fry for a 1-2 minutes. Stir often as plantains release a lot of starch and might stick to the bottom. 
  7. Once golden, reduce heat to medium-low and carefully flip the plantains over and cook until the underside is golden brown. Transfer to a paper towel lined plate and let cool, seasoning with a pinch of salt. Repeat with the remaining plantains. 
  8. Black Beans: Pour out most of the oil from the large skillet and return to medium-low heat. Add the chopped onions to the pan and cook for about 5 minutes until soft and translucent. Add beans and their liquid to the pan, season with salt and increase heat to medium. Cook, stirring frequently, until liquid has reduced by about half, about 5 minutes. Cover to keep warm while you make the spinach
  9. Spinach: While the beans are cooking, pour a tablespoon of oil into a second large skillet over medium heat. Add garlic and cook about 1 minute, until fragrant. Add a few handfuls of spinach, stirring to coat with garlic and olive oil, and continue to fold in more spinach as it cooks down. Sprinkle with salt and stir frequently, about 2 to 3 minutes, until spinach is wilted. Taste and season with more salt if needed. 
  10. To assemble, reheat the quinoa in a microwave and divide among bowls. Top each bowl with spinach, a large spoonful of black beans, a few plantains, and chicken. Drizzle mojo crema all over and sprinkle with cilantro leaves and pickled red onions.

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