Super Bowl frenzy is in full effect. With it comes a plethora of prep for Super Bowl parties. Sure, wings and chips will be staple foods at any gathering, but if you want your guests coming back for more — yeah we’re talking to you primos, tios and other Latino brethren — then you’d best add some Latino staples to your gathering. And then there is also proper tailgate cooking protocol. Who better to give you advice than master chef Aarón Sánchez?
Last year, Chef Aarón teamed up with Bud Light aboard the Bud Light Hotel for Super Bowl weekend to demonstrate how to prep a Pollo Pipian dish and also offered day-of pointers. ‘LLERO was in the room to get the skinny for you.
Sure you could roll out the standard avocado or sour cream, but you want something with a kick — go pipián – which is piquant Mexican sauce traditionally served over roast chicken or enchiladas. It is part of a larger family of ground sauces known as moles.
1 1/4 cup green pumpkin seeds (pepitas)
1 pound tomatillos, husked and rinsed
1 serrano chile, stemmed
1/2 medium white onion, roughly chopped
1 1/2 cups chicken broth, preferably organic, warmed
1/4 cup loosely packed fresh cilantro leaves
Char Your Vegetables – Take the tomatillos, once rinsed, white onion, serrano chile and add olive oil, salt and pepper and put on your grill to char.
Toast the Pumpkin Seeds – Be sure to stir constantly, until they have expanded and begin to pop. Transfer the seeds to a plate and let cool.
Mix It All Together – In a medium, heavy saucepan, simmer the tomatillos, serrano and onions in salted water until the tomatillos turn a dark green color. Transfer the tomatillos, serrano and onions to a blender and puree with chicken broth, cilantro and toasted pumpkin seeds until smooth.
As noted before, you can add the pipián to enchiladas or chicken. For chicken, Chef Aarón recommends placing the pipián under the chicken, which allows skin on the chicken to stay crispy; if you pour it over the pollo it can flatten the skin.