Traditional pupusas are thick pancake-like dish stuffed with some sort of savory filling.
The version in this recipe is a casserole instead of the tortilla version and that makes a bit of a difference as it allows to produce a larger amount with smaller effort since it does not require that each pupusa is cooked individually.
It was delicious dish as evidenced by half of it being gone before I had a chance to take a shot.
The second surprise to this recipe is the addition of an ingredient I never used before: nopalitos or cactus paddles.
I did not what to expect and was pleasantly surprised; they taste like milder pickles and complement the sweetness of the corn flour (masa harina) in a perfect way.
Realistic prep time for me was close to 45 minutes with a total cooking time of about an hour and a half, but don’t let that be a discouragement - it was an easy to make meal.
- 2 cups nopalitos (about 6 chopped nopales, cactus paddles)
- 2 (4-ounce) skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly groUnd black pepper
- Cooking spray
- 3/4 cup finely chopped onion
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 4 ounces shredded Monterey Jack cheese with jalapeño peppers (about 1 cup), divided
- 7.7 ounces masa harina (about 2 1/4 cups) - go for 8 ounces
- 1 cup water - I found I needed to add more as I shaped the dough
- 1 teaspoon salt
- Preheat oven to 375F. (do this later - it takes a while to make the filling)
- To prepare filling. cook nopalitos in boiling water 10 minutes.
- Sprinkle chicken with 1/2 teaspoon salt, cumin, and pepper.
Heat a medium skillet over medium heat.
Coat pan with cooking spray.
Add chicken; cook 4 minutes on each side or until done.
Remove chicken from pan; cool slightly, and shred with 2 forks.
- Heat pan over medium heat.
Add onion and garlic; sauté 4 minutes or until tender.
Stir in nopalitos, chicken, and 2/3 cup cheese.
Cook 5 minutes or until thoroughly heated.
- To prepare dough, weigh or lightly spoon masa harina in dry measuring cups; level with a knife.
Combine masa harina, 1 up water, and 1 teaspoon salt in a medium bowl.
Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface; knead lightly.
Press one-third of dough into an 11 x 7—inch baking dish coated with cooking spray.
Spread filling over dough.
Gently press remaining dough into a 4-inch square on heavy-duty plastic wrap.
Cover with additional plastic wrap.
Roll, still covered, into an 11 x 7—inch rectangle.
Remove bottom sheet of plastic wrap; fit dough over filling.
Remove top sheet of plastic wrap.
Bake at 3750 for 20 minutes.
Sprinkle with 1/3 cup cheese.
Bake an additional 5 minutes or until cheese melts.
Serves 8 (serving size: 1/8 of casserole)
- calories 234;
- fat 7g (sat 3.2g, mono 1.9g, poly 1g);
- protein 16g;
- carbs 26.8g;
- fiber 1.6g;
- cholesterol 35mg;
- iron 33mg; sodium 474mg; calcium 244mg