Friday, March 02, 2012

Spiced Caramel

Believe it or not, I'm still trying to use up the can of chipotles in adobo.  Those suckers last forever!  On the plus side, that means I get to bring in new dishes to our house that I might not otherwise have considered.

Like this chipotle chicken.  For some reason, I am far more apt to use chipotles in sauces - mostly in Mexican dishes.  Tossing one in to a sauce, especially a tomato based sauce, gives it a nice spicy smokiness.

This chicken, however, has far more spice than I'm used to in a chipotle dish.  This is one spicy chicken.  I attribute it to the fact that there's not much to temper the heat.  However, as Thatboy pointed out the spiciness of this dish doesn't detract from the great flavor.

The original recipe calls for 2 Tbsp of chipotles in adobo and if I were to make it again, I would probably only use 1 Tbsp.  It would still have the heat and the kick, but maybe not to such a high degree.  We're missing a broiler pan right now, so instead of broiling it, I cut the chicken into bite-sized pieces and just cooked it in the skillet with the sauce.

Caramelized Chipotle Chicken (Adapted from Oishii who adapted it from Gourmet)

3 TBS. olive oil, divided
4 large garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1 onion, chopped
1/2 cup ketchup
1 tbsp. Dijon mustard
1 Tbsp. packed brown sugar
2 Tbsp. chopped chipotles in adobo
1/2 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
1 Tbsp. cider vinegar
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. pepper
a pinch of cumin
2 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
  1. Heat 1 1/2 Tbsp of the oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. 
  2. Add the garlic and cook for one minute, until golden.  Remove from skillet.
  3. Reduce heat to medium and add the onions to the oil. Cook, stirring occasionally, until golden brown, about 15 minutes.
  4. Return the garlic to the skillet with the ketchup, mustard, sugar, chipotles, Worcestershire sauce, vinegar, cinnamon, salt, pepper, and cumin.  Simmer 3-5 minutes until the sauce is thick.
  5. Cut the chicken into bite-sized pieces.  Add the chicken to the sauce and continue simmering until chicken is cooked through, 5-10 minutes.


  1. When I am in the States I by the large cans of the chilies in adobo sauce. Mexican ingredients as a whole are not easy to find around here.

  2. I love chipotle and even more I love the idea of savory spicy caramel! But 2 tbsp is a SERIOUS amount of spice.

  3. I know what you mean about this stuff lasting forever! I ended up freezing mine in flat so that I could break off chunks at a time. About 4 years ago, my mom convinced me that I should be two cans of the stuff because it's not available everywhere here. I still have about 1 and 1/3 can's worth. The recipe looks like a good way to make use of the 1/3. Good luck with finding the skillet.

  4. I once used a entire can of chipotle peppers in adobo sauce in a pot of chili...OMG! It would set your hair on fire...Hence why 1-2 tablespoons are plenty. Your chicken may have had some kick but no doubt it was delicious. I love the smoky heat of adobo sauce...Rock on Girlfriend.


    P.S. I had no idea that you lived in Tallahassee at one point in your life. Very cool The world is a small place. :-)

  5. My husband does not like heat in food. Can you imagine? This looks delicious to me but I don't think, I should make it. Drat.

  6. Oh my Lord!! That looks SO good! Have you ever tried Korean fried chicken? This dish reminds me kind of that: sweet, spicy, sticky. It's my favorite KFC!