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Thursday, January 7, 2010

Fiesta Chicken Salad

This is a salad that I make quite frequently as a main dish. You can add or subtract based on what you have on hand, if you marinate the chicken and add corn and beans, you'll get the main idea. Avocados and eggs add healthy fat and a nice creaminess, so I generally use one or the other. The tortilla chips give you a little extra crunch. If you have a red or green bell pepper on hand, chop some up and throw it in. Like tomatoes, add a diced tomato to the salad. You get the idea.

Fiesta Chicken Salad

1 large boneless, skinless chicken breast
2 T lime juice
1 T olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tsp cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp salt

4 cups romaine lettuce, roughly chopped
1/4 cup black beans, rinsed and drained
1/4 cup corn (I used shoepeg corn because I had some open, but frozen or yellow corn is what I normally use)
1/4 cup red onion, roughly chopped
1/2 avocado, roughly chopped
1/4 cup shredded cheese (I used sharp cheddar, but often use colby jack or Mexican blend)
Cilantro-Lime Dressing (see below)

Cut chicken into thin strips and add marinade ingredients to a plastic food-storage bag. Add chicken slices and mix around until chicken is well-coated. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight.

Heat a skillet to medium-high heat, add chicken and cook through. Turn heat to low and add corn and black beans and stir gently, cook for about 1 minute to heat corn and beans. Distribute lettuce on plates, add cheese, avocado and onion. Add chicken mixture to salads and top with crushed tortilla chips and dressing.

Cilantro-Lime Dressing
Adapted from All-recipes

1/3 cup lime juice
2 T honey
1 clove garlic
2 tsp apple-cider vinegar
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and chopped
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 cup packed cilantro
1/2 cup olive oil

Add first 6 ingredients to a food processor and pulse until garlic and jalapeno are finely chopped. Add cilantro and pulse a few times. Once blended, slowly stream in olive oil with food processor running and process until incorporated. Pour over salad.

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