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  Added: Oct 20, 2006  •  Visited (821)  •  Print version Print this recipe (41)  •  eMail recipe eMail recipe (2)  •  Write review  •  Not rated Rate this recipe
Molded Steamed Chicken, Cornmeal And Vegetables
(Cuscuz De Galinha)
What You Need:
  • A 3½-to 4- pound chicken, cut into 6 to 8 serving pieces
  • ¼ cup distilled white vinegar
  • ¼ cup fresh lemon juice
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • ½ cup coarsely chopped onions
  • ¼ teaspoon finely chopped garlic
  • ¼ cup finely chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 teaspoon coriander seeds
  • 1 teaspoon dried savory
  • ½ teaspoon finely chopped fresh mint
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 large tomato, peeled, seeded and coarsely chopped (see salsa cruda), or substitute ½ cup chopped, drained, canned Italian plum tomatoes
  • 1 cup chicken stock, fresh or canned

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • ½ pound chorizo or other smoked spiced pork sausage, sliced 1/8 inch thick

  • 4 cups white cornmeal
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 1 cup melted butter (2 quarter-pound sticks)
  • ¼ cup finely chopped fresh parsley
  • 3 bottled tabasco peppers, drained, rinsed in cold water and finely chopped

  • 3 medium tomatoes, peeled and sliced about 1/8 inch thick
  • A 10-ounce can hearts of palm, drained and sliced into rounds 1/8 inch thick
  • 3 hard-cooked eggs, cut crosswise into 1/8-inch slices
  • 12 pimiento-stuffed olives, cut crosswise into 1/8-inch slices
  • 1 cup cooked fresh green peas, or 1 cup thoroughly defrosted frozen peas
  • 3 seedless oranges, peeled and cut crosswise into 1/8-inch slices

  • How To Cook:
    1. Arrange the chicken in one layer in a large shallow flameproof casserole or skillet. In a small enameled or stainless-steel saucepan, combine the vinegar, lemon juice, ¼ cup of the oil, the onions, garlic, parsley, coriander seeds, savory, mint, 1 teaspoon of salt and the black pepper, and bring to a boil over high heat.

    2. Pour the hot vinegar marinade over the chicken, turning the pieces to coat them evenly. Cover the casserole tightly with aluminum foil or plastic wrap, and marinate the chicken for 3 hours at room temperature or 6 hours in the refrigerator, turning the pieces occasionally to keep them well moistened on all sides.

    3. Over high heat, bring the chicken and marinade to a boil in the casserole. Reduce the heat to low, and simmer, uncovered, for 10 minutes. Stir in the chopped tomato and chicken stock and return to a boil.

    4. Reduce the heat to low, cover the casserole, and simmer for 30 minutes, or until the chicken is tender but not falling apart. Transfer the chicken to a plate, and remove the casserole from the heat.

    5. As soon as the chicken is cool enough to handle, remove the skin with a small, sharp knife or your fingers. Cut or pull the meat away from the bones. Discard the skin and bones, and cut the chicken meat into strips about 1/8 inch wide and 1 to 1½ inches long.

    6. Strain the reserved cooking stock through a fine sieve set over a mixing bowl, then return it to the casserole. Drop in the chicken strips and set the casserole aside.

    1. In another skillet, heat 2 tablespoons of oil over high heat and add the sausage slices.

    2. Turning the pieces constantly, brown them quickly but lightly on both sides, then remove them from the pan and spread them out on paper towels to drain.

    1. Spread the cornmeal out in a large ungreased skillet and cook it over moderate heat, stirring it constantly with a wooden spoon for about 5 minutes. Watch carefully for any sign of burning and regulate the heat accordingly.

    2. When the cornmeal is a pale golden color, stir into it one teaspoon of salt and slowly pour in the cup of boiling water, stirring constantly. Cook over low heat, for 2 minutes, until all the moisture is absorbed.

    3. Then remove the skillet from the heat and mix in the cup of melted butter and the ¼ cup of parsley. Stir it little by little into the reserved skillet of chicken and stock and when they are well combined add the reserved sausage slices and the chopped tabasco peppers.

    4. Test the cornmeal mixture by rolling a spoonful of it between the palms of your hands. It should form a loose ball. If the cornmeal is too dry and crumbles, add a little chicken stock or water to the pan and mix until the cornmeal particles adhere. (Be careful not to add too much liquid; the cornmeal should be moist but not pasty.)

    1. Butter or oil the inside of a 9- to 10-inch fine-holed colander and center a large slice of tomato on the bottom of it. Arrange some of the sliced hearts of palm, hard-cooked eggs, tomatoes and olives in an attractive pattern around it, covering the sides as completely as possible.

    2. Spoon in a third of the meat and cornmeal mixture and, with a spoon, smooth it and pack it down gently. Scatter a layer of peas on top and on it arrange half the reserved hearts of palm, eggs, tomatoes and olives.

    3. Spoon another third of the cornmeal mixture into the colander, pack it down, and cover with the remaining peas and other ingredients.

    4. Spoon in the remaining cornmeal mixture, pack it down lightly, and cover with a large piece of foil. Tuck the ends of the foil under the top rim of the colander to hold it securely in place.

    1. Place the colander in a deep pot, large enough to enclose it completely. Pour enough water into the pot to come within 1½ inches of the bottom of the colander.

    2. Bring the water to a boil over high heat, cover the pot tightly, and steam over low heat for 50 minutes, replenishing the water in the pot with boiling water if it boils away.

    3. To unmold and serve the "cuscuz", place a serving plate upside down over the top of the colander and, grasping both sides firmly, turn the plate and mold over. (If the handles of your colander stand up above the rim, be sure to choose a plate small enough to fit inside them. If the handles project from the sides of the colander, you can use any size serving plate you like.)

    4. Rap the plate on a table and the "cuscuz" should slide out of the mold. If any of the vegetable or egg garnish sticks to the colander, pry the pieces loose with the tip of a knife and replace them on the mold.

    5. If some of the garnish appears too crushed, substitute fresh slices of egg or vegetable. Serve the "cuscuz" hot, accompanied by sliced oranges.

    To Serve: 8
    This recipe is also available in:
    Cuisine » Americas » Brazil
    Main Ingredient » Meat & Poultry » Chicken
    Main Ingredient » Vegetables » Palm Hearts
    Main Ingredient » Fruits » Orange
    Dish » Main Courses


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