3 cups homemade chicken stock or low-sodium chicken broth
16 corn tortillas
Vegetable oil, for frying
For serving: crema, crumbled queso cotija, chopped cilantro, shredded iceberg lettuce, chopped white onion, and lime wedges
Bring the onion, guajillos, chipotles, tomatoes, garlic, oregano, coriander, cumin, peppercorns, bay leaf, salt, chicken breasts, and stock to a boil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Reduce to a simmer, cover, and cook until the chicken is cooked through and shreds easily with 2 forks, 25 to 35 minutes.
Remove the saucepan from the heat, transfer the chicken to a plate, and let cool slightly. Remove the skin and separate the meat from the bones; discard the skin and bones. Shred the meat into small pieces and transfer to a medium bowl. Season with salt and toss to combine. Set aside until ready to use.
Transfer the cooked vegetables and spices and the cooking liquid to a blender and blend until smooth. Set this guajillo salsa aside.
Spoon 2 to 3 tablespoons of the shredded chicken across the center of a tortilla. Fold one side over the filling, then tightly roll up the tortilla and secure with a wooden toothpick. Repeat with remaining chicken and tortillas.
Fill a large heavy skillet, preferably cast iron, about halfway with oil. Place over high heat until the temperature reaches 350°F. Working in batches, fry the rolled tortillas, turning them occasionally, until all sides are deep golden brown, 3 to 4 minutes. Transfer to a paper towel–lined sheet tray and continue frying the remaining tortillas, adjusting the heat as needed to maintain the temperature. Remove the toothpicks before serving.
Divide the guajillo salsa among bowls and arrange 3 to 4 tortillas on the rim of each bowl so that one end is in the salsa. Top with crema, cotija, cilantro, lettuce, onion, and a squeeze of lime.
Rick Martínez is an award-winning, bestselling cookbook author and host of cooking and travel shows on YouTube. He is a regular contributor to The New York Times and currently resides in Mazatlán with his dog, Choco, where he cooks, eats, and enjoys the Mexican Pacific coast.