Chicken Vaca Frita

For the mojo:
10 garlic cloves, peeled
2 teaspoons salt
½ teaspoon black peppercorns
½ cup fresh orange juice
¾ cup fresh lime juice
1 teaspoon dried oregano leaves
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

For the chicken
2 cups cooked shredded chicken breast
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 large white sweet onion, sliced into ½ moon shapes
salt and pepper to taste
1 fresh lime, juiced
½ cup fresh cilantro, chopped

For the mango salsa:
3 ripe mangos, diced
1 small Haas avocado, diced
¼ cup red onion, diced
½ red bell pepper, chopped
½ jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced
¼ cup chopped cilantro, chopped
½ teaspoon ground cumin
⅛ teaspoon (pinch) crushed red pepper
½ teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon olive oil
½ fresh lime, juiced
½ fresh orange, juiced

8 corn tortillas
black beans (recipe below)

Make the moho:
Using a mortar and pestle, combine the garlic, salt and peppercorns and mash the mixture into a paste. Transfer to a bowl and add the orange and lime juice and oregano, stirring to combine. Slowly stream in olive oil and whisk until combined. If time, set aside (1 hour or longer, for maximum flavor) or use right away.

Make the chicken:
Add the mojo to the shredded chicken and let it stand at room temperature 30 to 45 minutes.

In a large skillet, cook the onion in 1 tablespoon of the oil over medium heat. season with salt and pepper. Cook until golden and crispy, stirring often (be careful not to burn)! Transfer the onions to a bowl.

In the same skillet, heat the remaining oil over medium heat, lift up the chicken with tongs, leaving the marinade in the bowl, add the chicken to the skillet and cook, until brown and crispy about 5 to 6 minutes. Using a spatula, flip shredded chicken and continue to crisp the other side. Season with salt to taste, add onions back to the skillet. Add the lime juice and cilantro and stir well. Set-aside until ready to use.

Make the mango salsa:

Prepare the mango salsa while the chicken is marinating. In a serving bowl, combine all ingredients and mix well. Season to taste with salt. For best flavor, let the salsa stand for 10 minutes or longer before serving.

Heat the tortillas:
Cook each tortilla for about 10 seconds per side or until lightly charred, directly on gas burner or outdoor grill. Keep warm in damp kitchen towel until finished cooking all tortillas.

Assemble the tacos by layering 1-2 tablespoons black bean mixture, chicken vaca frita and mango salsa. Garnish with fresh cilantro and enjoy!

Black beans
2 tablespoons olive oil
½ small onion, chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
2 (14.5 oz) cans black beans, drained and rinsed
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon salt
freshly ground black pepper

In a medium saucepan, heat oil over medium heat. Sauté onions 3 to 5 minutes, until soft and translucent. Add garlic and cook 30 seconds (making sure it does not burn), stir in black beans, cumin, salt and pepper. Simmer mixture for about 5 to 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Slightly mash beans if desired.



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Oceania Cruises is the world’s leading culinary and destination focused cruise line. The line’s seven small, luxurious ships carry no more than 1,250 guests and feature The Finest Cuisine at Sea and destination- rich itineraries that span the globe. Expertly curated travel experiences aboard the designer-inspired, small ships call on more than 450 marquee and boutique ports across Europe, Alaska, Asia, Africa, Australia, New Zealand, New England, Canada, Bermuda, the Caribbean, the Panama Canal, Tahiti and the South Pacific in addition to the epic 180-day Around the World Voyages. The brand has an additional 1,200-guest Vista Class ship on order for delivery in 2025.

Thanks to

Air Travel Provided by Alaska Airlines |

3 Responses to Chicken Vaca Frita

  1. georgina says:

    Where did you get the bowl for the mango salsa ?

    Everything you make is delicious.
    Thank you for sharing all your recipes.


  2. Susan says:

    Wow, made this for a girls week and it was a hit! Made mojo, black beans and salsa at home, so all that was left was to pick up a rotisserie chicken on my way. Delucious!! Thank you so much!

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