Salsa Verde Chicken Tostadas with Cilantro Lime Crema

Some nights a slow cooker can be my best friend. I especially love it when I want to make a dish with a few extra steps and my protein is already made. Last time we were at the farmer's market it was brimming with ingredients for a fresh salsa verde.  I am not one to use salsa verde often, but love the flavors slow cooked with a protein.  Recently, I have seen a few Pinterst recipes using salsa verde and beer in the slow cooker. I decided to create my own recipe and make tostadas for my family. 

I believe that all tostadas need protien, fresh crunchy veggies and a creamy sauce. Since I had already created one part of my protein I went to work to make a simple refried bean. I am not sure of the technical way to make them, but I put together something simple based on the different seasoning we like at our house.  Next, I made my crema and used fresh citrus and herbs.  I love using fresh citrus juice over a bottled because the flavors are much brighter and have a more natural taste. Finally, I chopped a variety of fresh veggies and got down to the business of assembling.  At first glance, the idea of frying tortillas might sound scary, but it is soooo easy and totally worth it! However, it is important to keep a close eye as you fry because the tortillas can burn quickly. 

Ron, Kellen and I absolutely loved these tostadas! To me, the crema pulls it all together and the chicken is juice and beans were smokey and flavorful.  Kellen is all about different "nacho" combos these days and loves breaking up his tortilla to dip into the beans and chicken. 

Tonight I am headed to KoKo's with two of my girlfriends for sushi. I already planned out what I am getting: super white tuna sushi, bomb maki roll, godzilla maki and a cup of thai shrimp soup.... I am so excited!


For Chicken:
1 - 1 1/2 lb chicken breasts
1 1/2 cups Salsa Verde (you can also use jarred)
8 oz beer (I use Corona)
1/2 tsp salt
1 Tbl Cumin

For Crema:
1 cup crema or sour cream
1 handful of fresh cilantro
Juice of 1/2 a large lime (or whole medium or small)
Sprinkle of salt (optional)

For Beans (you can buy them already made if you like): 
1 Tbl olive oil
1/4 cup diced onion
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp chili powder
1 15 oz can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
2/3 cup chicken stock

For Tortillas (you can buy them already made if you like):
8-10 6 inch corn tortillas
1/2 cup canola oil

Diced tomatoes
Sliced Avocado
Shredded Lettuce
Chopped Cilantro
Queso Fresco


For Chicken: 
Place chicken into crockpot. In a medium bowl, mix salsa verde, beer, salt and cumin. Pour mixture over chicken. Cook on low 7-8 hours. When chicken finished cooking, remove it from the crockpot, shred and return it to the crockpot so it can soak in the juice and flavors. 

Following can be prepared after chicken is shredded:

For Crema:
Place crema or sour cream into food processor. Add cilantro and lime juice. Process till smooth. Remove from processor and place in a airtight container in the fridge. 

For Beans:
Heat olive oil in a medium skillet. Add onions and cook till tender. Stir in the garlic powder and chili powder. Add the beans and stock. Gently mash with a fork. Stir until smooth and warmed through. 

For Tortillas: 
Complete tortillas right before you are ready to serve. Heat 1/2 cup oil in a heavy rimmed skillet over medium-high heat until it shimmers. Fry tortillas, 1 at a time, turning once or twice until golden brown. It will take about 45 to 60 seconds per tortilla. Transfer to a paper towel lined plate. 

To assemble:
Place fried tortillas onto plate and spread refried beans evenly over the tortilla.  Place shredded chicken on top of the beans. Top with sliced avocado, tomatoes and shredded lettuce, chopped cilantro and queso fresco. Finish with a generous drizzle of cilantro lime crema. Serve with fresh lime wedges if you desire an additional pop of fresh citrus. 

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