Recipe Redo: Rachael Ray’s Ancho Chicken Soft Tacos

10/16/2013 at 02:08 PM ET

Maxwell Ryan The Kitchn Rachael Ray Chicken Tacos
Nealey Dozier

Maxwell Ryan is the founder of Apartment Therapy and The Kitchn, a web magazine about home cooking and kitchen design. Visit Wednesdays for his spins on celebrity recipes and more. 

When I have a party, I love to serve tacos. They’re a great way to feed a crowd while keeping it easy on the host—all you have to do is lay out the fixins’!

So as soon as I saw Rachael Ray‘s recipe for Ancho Chicken Soft Tacos, I knew it would be a crowdpleaser. But since it’s only designed to serve a few people, I decided to scale it up for a party.

Rachael makes her tacos in a skillet, but my version uses a slow cooker, which makes entertaining a cinch—you can leave the taco meat simmering and forget about it while you do the rest of your party prep. The cooker can even double as a serving dish.

I also subbed in corn tortillas, which are healthier than flour. This is a great main course for game day or any fall potluck gathering!

Maxwell Ryan The Kitchn Rachael Ray Chicken Tacos
Nealey Dozier

Maxwell Ryan The Kitchn Rachael Ray Chicken Tacos
Nealey Dozier

Slow Cooker Spicy Chicken Tacos for a Crowd

Serves 8-10

3 ancho chile peppers

3-4 cloves garlic, peeled

2 cups chicken stock

2 tsp. ground cumin

2 tsp. ground coriander

2 tsp. smoked paprika

1 tsp. dried oregano

½ tsp. cinnamon

3-4 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs

1 large red onion, thinly sliced

2 tbsp. cider vinegar

25 6-inch corn tortillas

1. Combine the chile peppers, garlic and chicken stock in a small pot over medium-high heat. Simmer until the peppers are very tender, about 15 minutes.

2. Transfer the mixture to a food processor, or use an immersion blender, and puree until smooth. Stir in the cumin, coriander, paprika, oregano and cinnamon.

3. Place the chicken thighs and sliced onion in a slow cooker. Pour in the chile sauce and stir to coat. Place the lid on the slow cooker and cook for 5-7 hours on low. The chicken should easily pull apart with a fork when finished.

4. Remove the lid and stir in the cider vinegar. Use two forks to pull the chicken into large pieces. If serving immediately, keep the slow cooker on the warm setting and serve with tortillas. If serving later, let the chicken cool, cover and refrigerate for no longer than 3 days, and reheat on the warm setting before serving.

FILED UNDER: Food Blog , Recipes , The Kitchn

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The Latest Craze in Disco Styles Is See-Through Jeans—but Beware of Foggy Bottoms
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The Latest Craze in Disco Styles Is See-Through Jeans—but Beware of Foggy Bottoms

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On a clear day, you can see forever—or at least that’s the wicked thought behind L.A. designer Agi Berliner’s transparent idea: see-through jeans. Exhibitionists notwithstanding, most folks wear them over bathing suits or as attention-getting evening wear with halters, garter belts and body stockings. Created for the disco crowd, the $34 jeans are selling like, well, hot pants. In just six weeks, 25,000 pairs have already been sold in such major department store chains as Macy’s, Bonwit’s and Saks.

“What’s limiting American designers is that we’re afraid to do something different,” says Berliner, 32, a Hungarian émigré who fled with her family to the U.S. in 1956. Agi thought up the gimmick in London while marveling at the way plastics were being employed by designers of punk fashion. In her L.A. office, where she designs for La Parisienne junior sportswear, Agi spent five days on the phone and six weeks testing to come up with the right plastic.

Agi herself tried out the French-cut jeans with the zipper in front, and quickly found several problems: Some plastics tore away from stitching, others wouldn’t bend and all fogged with perspiration. The ideal material proved to be a vinyl supplied by a bookbinder. The steam was eliminated with a series of vents behind the knees and in the crotch. “They’re no hotter than polyester pants,” claims Agi, “and if you wear them with tights, they won’t stick to your legs.”

Whatever the discomfort and despite the problem of Saturday night feverishness, discomaniacs report one major advantage of the plastic pants: no laundry bills. To keep Berliner’s see-through jeans clear, all the wearer needs is a little Windex.

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