Saturday, October 16, 2010

My 100th Post: Cuban-Style Mojo Chicken (Pollo al Mojo de Ajo)

I am not raw. I just absorbed a lot of mojo.

Guess what? It's my 100th post, and to celebrate I decided to try a recipe I've been staring at for at least a few months. There's a local Cuban restaurant that has the best mojo de ajo (garlic sauce) ever. I'm poor, so I don't get to it eat as often as I'd like, hence the homemade attempt. Anyway, the restaurant uses it when roasting both their pork and chicken, and then pours it over the meat, rice and onions when served (with a side of plantains--I don't eat the black beans). Whenever we get takeout, my family fights for the sauce at the bottom of the container. Yeah, we fight over mojo sauce. So what? You would too if you knew what I was talking about. Aaaanyway, if you try this recipe, you have to pour the mojo over your rice. I demand it. In italics.


Now, you see those garlic cloves above? And the garlic paste below? That's 20 cloves of culinary beauty. That is why this meal was a celebration. I know I wax poetic about garlic on a fairly frequent basis, as it is one of my top three ingredients.  And I was ultra proud to find out that garlic does, in fact, belong in everything, including chocolate truffles. But what I may have failed to mention is that my mother, despite not minding garlic, does not love garlic. And being the accommodating cook that I am,* I often find myself removing a portion of food before I toss in five more cloves for everyone else. And yes, it usually is five more cloves. But she and my father were off celebrating their anniversary this past week, allowing me to celebrate my very own milestone in the way I saw fit. So I did a happy dance as I cooked, and then I ate a lot of garlic. Thank god you couldn't smell my breath.


I suppose that, since it is my 100th post, I should also thank my parents. In fact, you all should. Without my mom's indulgence and my dad's eagerness to eat new foods and buy me groceries, The Baking Barrister wouldn't exist in its current incarnation. I'm not going to thank my brother, though. All he ever does is tell me to add red pepper flakes and try to get out of doing the dishes. And I'd like to thank my readers for all of their encouragement and feedback. I probably would have abandoned this long ago only to spend my time watching talk shows while lamenting my lack of employment. Instead I get to whine with you--so thanks.

*I'm mostly accommodating because for most of my life my picky self required the same of my parents. Plus my mom buys me things like ramekins and a set of plain white dishes so I can be all pretty for you. 







Cuban-Style Mojo Chicken
Adapted from 3 Guys From Miami

20 cloves garlic, minced 
1 tsp. salt 
1 tsp. black pepper
1/2 cup orange juice*
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup lime juice
1 cup onion, minced
1/3 cup olive oil
2 lbs chicken breast




*If you have access to bitter oranges, use 1 1/2 cups instead of the orange, lemon & lime combo.


1. Get a big bowl of oranges, lemons & limes, and juice them. Pour designated quantities into a medium-sized bowl.

2. Mince all of that garlic. Yes, all of it. I hope you have a garlic press. Add salt and pepper, and mash into a paste.

3. Add garlic paste and onions to the juice and stir well. Let sit for 30 minutes.

4. When marinade is done sitting, heat olive oil in a sauce pan. You don't want it to boil, but you want it to get just to smoking point. Stir marinade into oil and remove from heat. Let cool. Note: there will be oil splatter and sizzle, so be careful.

5. Poke a bunch of holes in your chicken  breasts. Yes, poke them.


6. Place in one layer in an oven-safe casserole dish. Pour the marinade over the chicken, cover, and let sit in the fridge for at least 2 hours.

7. Preheat your oven to 350F. Place dish, uncovered, straight into the oven. Bake for 15-20 minutes, until chicken is fully cooked.

8. Serve over rice (you must cover your rice in the marinade) with plantains and beans, or shred and use in sandwiches.

29 comments:

Courtney said...

Oh, I just love me some garlic cloves. What a great recipe - and congrats on your 100th post! I celebrated mine back in September, crazy to think about.

Joudie's Mood Food said...

Garlic and chicken is probably the best combo. I love this dish. Looks right up my street! Yumm! Congrats on your 100th post. I totally forgot about mine.... :)

Lindsey @ Gingerbread Bagels said...

Congrats on your 100th post and a great (and delicious) one it is! I LOVE garlic and this recipe looks beyond amazing. MMmmmm

Sis. Boom. said...

Lookin' good!!! And such a great recipe for your 100th! You have done the impossible: inspired me to actually want to make another chicken dish! I'll be making this one!
Trevor Sis Boom.

roxan said...

Are you talking about Versailles? I used to live right around the corner from them! Do you ever go to Gloria's or Gaby's? Those were my favorites in the area.

The chicken looks awesome... I don't really like Versailles that much but if they served your dish there i'd totally go to get it. I swear i'm not just saying that!

Chef Dennis said...

Congratulations on your 100th post!!! What a wonderful chciken dish to share with us, the mojo style chicken looks so flavorful!

January said...

happy 100th post! :)

Monet said...

Congratulations on your 100th post! I loved hearing about how you remove a bit of food for your mom before adding more garlic goodness...what a sweet daughter you are! And this dish looks delicious. I wish you could have me over for dinner. Thank you for all your kind words on my blog...your thoughts are so appreciated.

Cuisine by Emme Ribeiro said...

Congrats on your 100th post! I totally agree....garlic belongs in everything! This looks delicious :)

tastesbetterwithfriends said...

I haven't heard of mojo da ajo, but I am totally intrigued. Not a first date meal though lol
Happy 100, congrats!!!

Victoria K. said...

Congrats on your 100th post!! I'm glad you were able to recreate a special dish the way you wanted, with all the garlic in the world :) A celebration is worthy of great food and garlic breath, haha.

Barbara | VinoLuciStyle said...

I keep finding new reasons why we get along. Garlic. If a recipe says a clove; that reads 2 or 3 to me and exponentially the same if it says 2...must mean 4-6, right?

I just roasted 100 cloves of garlic...why bother with a couple at a time when I know I'll want some all the time?

This looks fabulous and despite it's fancy name...I have everything on hand and can make it for dinner. Tonight.

Kelsey said...

My dad is a huge mojo fan but I have never made my own!! That is awesome.
Congratulations on your 100th post :)

Ruby said...

Congrats on 100 posts! I love the look of your chicken - all that garlic and citrus sounds amazing. And who doesn't need a little mojo? (Yes, I'm pronouncing that like Austin Powers...) ;-)

michelle @ The Domestic Mama and The Village Cook said...

I love this post and the pictures were awesome! Yum, this looks like something I have had before, and LOVED!

sara @ CaffeIna said...

Oh congrats on the 100th post! I need to start thinking what I will be making for mine. These mojo chicken looks amazing. I love love love Cuban cuisine!

danasfoodforthought said...

This sounds like tasty garlicky goodness!! Thanks for sharing such a great recipe on your 100th post!

Spicie Foodie said...

Delicioso! Congrats on the 100th post and great recipe to celebrate.

merckurybubbles said...

I personally LOVE Versailles...so...is this as good as their mojo? I've tried to replicate it myself, but alas, it was not up to par!

A SPICY PERSPECTIVE said...

Yay for you! 100 posts is quite an accomplishment! This dish looks festive and fabulous!

Lisa {Authentic Suburban Gourmet } said...

Congrats on your 100th post - a wonderful accomplishment. Your chicken dish looks amazing.

Susi said...

Happy 100th post! This is a great looking recipe and certainly the perfect way to celebrate!

Jamie said...

Congratulations! And this is the perfect way to celebrate. Gotta say, I love Cuban food but in France? Doesn't exist. So thanks for a fantastic, garlicky, Cuban recipe that looks lusciously divine!

Anonymous said...

Congratulations on your 100th post. I so look forward to reading your posts. The only thing I would like to request is more of them. I know you eat everyday so in order to help me remain entertained I think you should post everyday too!

Danielle said...

Looks good, and congrats for making it to 100 posts!

Mother Rimmy said...

Congratulations! This dish looks absolutely delicious! Lovely citrus flavors!

the actor's diet said...

congrats on your 100th post! i'm so glad to have discovered your blog (always happy to discover other angeleno bloggers) and am looking forward to meeting you at foodbuzz!

riceandwheat said...

Hey, don't be offended but... <3!

The recipe, the photos (esp that one of the citrus fruits), the name of this dish (say it 10 times fast!) ... all <3.

Hester Chang said...

Congratulations on your 100th post, BB! This looks so incredibly yummy that I'll be making the garlic paste soon with the bajillions of bulbs in my dry veggie basket.

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