Sunday, March 6, 2011

Everything is Better When it's Mini!

Originally posted 10/18/10

I just got back from a weekend at my mom’s house, back in California.  We saw some friends, and we saw my sisters and their families.  All in all, it was a great weekend.  Actually, it was a great weekend before we even left for California.  Why, you ask?  Because on Thursday, I picked up some of my products from my manufacturer!  Yeah!  So as soon as I figure out shipping, credit card charges and some other odds and ends…I will release 3 products!  I will keep you all posted, scouts honor.  My 5 year old was a Daisy Scout last year, so I can say that, right?

On Friday night, I hung out with some of my best friends.  We ate at a great pizza place, enjoyed some adult beverages and talked until we were too tired to talk anymore.  We partied like rock stars….until about 10:30pm.  So maybe old, retired rock stars.  And, just to entertain everyone, I let our server spill an entire container of Thousand Island Dressing down the front of me.  There isn’t much I won’t do for a free drink.  On Saturday night, my sisters, brothers-in-law, nieces and nephew all came to my mom’s house to help celebrate her 39th birthday (you’re welcome).  I made a yummy appetizer for everyone, using my soon to be released Smoky Chipotle BBQ Sauce.  It is a great combination of sweet and spicy and lends itself well to Mexican food…….I made Mini Chicken Tostadas.  I am a sucker for anything mini, and these were so yummy and cute!  And easy!

Isn’t it beautiful?  I used about ¾ of the jar for my appetizer.  I took one package of chicken thighs, about 1and ¼  pounds, and put it in the slow cooker with enough BBQ sauce to cover them.  You could also use breasts.  Mine were boneless, but it would work with bone-in too.  Basically, use whatever you have.  If you are feeling adventurous, throw in some chopped onion too.  Cook the chicken on low.  I know people always say that slow cookers keep meat moist, but I have found that meat can easily dry out in a slow cooker. You really have check on it, and turn the slow cooker down, or off, when the meat is cooked.
First off, do you love the retro-chic Corning Ware?  I believe my mom’s Corning Ware is older then me.  Back to the ingredients, I used the chicken cooked in the slow cooker (shredded), refried beans, shredded cheese, tortillas, shredded lettuce, olives, tomatoes and guacamole.  Feel free to top your tostadas however you like.  I would stay away from salsa because the Smoky Chipotle BBQ Sauce has such a great flavor that you don’t want to mess with.
To make these “mini” I used a clean can to punch out smaller circles from the tortillas.  I, of course, have an extensive collection of cookie cutters and would have used a circle cookie cutter had I been at home.  Since I was cooking at my mom’s…..I made due.
I fried the tortillas about 2 to 3 minutes each side, until golden brown-ish on both sides.  Then I set them to drain on a paper towel.  And salted them!  Please don’t forget the salt!!
After I fried up all the tortilla circles, I layered on the toppings.  You could also set up a tostada bar, and everyone can top their own however they like.  I think it goes without saying….you can use this chicken in tacos, burritos, nachos, enchiladas, straight out of the slow cooker with your finger, etc.
This is my finished product.  I thought they were beautiful.  And my family definitely seemed to enjoy them…..so much better then our usual cheese out of can.  I hope you make these soon.  They will be a hit, for sure!

Mini BBQ Chicken Tostadas
12 ounces Smoky Chipotle BBQ Sauce
1 and ½ pounds boneless chicken thighs
1 15 ounce can refried beans
1 Cup shredded cheddar cheese
5 large flour tortillas
Oil for frying
Assorted Toppings: lettuce, olives, guacamole, sour cream, tomatoes

Place chicken and sauce in slow cooker.  Cook on low for 6 to 8 hours.  Remove from slow cooker and shred. 
Punch circles, about 2 to 3 inches in diameter, in tortillas.  Fry in oil, 2 to 3 minutes each side.  Drain well. 
Top with beans, chicken, cheese and assorted toppings of your choice.

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