Thursday, September 13, 2007

Dia de la Independencia

Mexican Chicken Salad 2, originally uploaded by mud pie gourmet.

I know, I know, I haven't posted for a while. We have been to Disney World, and I have been adjusting to teaching an early morning church class. Yes, I am completely insane. I am pregnant with my third, and I wake up at 5:15am to teach 17 and 18 year olds about the Old Testament at 6 am (and I still haven't gotten to bed before 11pm). Thank goodness I split the teaching with my husband.

September 15th is Mexico's Independence Day which might explain why I made this Mexican Salad. Who am I kidding? I crave Mexican all the time. I have been known to have to have my own bowl of salsa at Mexican restaurants.

The secret ingredient is jicama. It is an underused vegetable if you ask me. When I worked at the American School Foundation in Mexico City the teachers would eat jicama in strips--like carrot sticks, with some ranch dressing. It is really good. It has a mild taste and a fun crunch. Here's to healthy eating...

Mexican Chicken Salad

(Serves 4 hearty main courses)

Marinade for Chicken

3 T olive oil
1 garlic clove, minced
1/2 cup lime juice
1/2 tsp cumin
1 T honey (optional)
Salt and Pepper to taste
4 chicken breasts

Combine above and place in a ziplock bag. Marinate 1 hour-overnight.
Heat grill to medium-high heat. Place chicken on grill, and cook about 7 minutes each side, until no longer pink in the middle. Let sit wrapped in tin-foil for 5 minutes, slice diagonally.

The Salad

1 cup corn (I use frozen)
1/2 cup jicama, diced
1 can black beans
1/3 cup red onions, chopped
1/2 red bell pepper,chopped
3/4 cup tomato, chopped
1 avocado, diced
1/2 cup queso fresco or feta
5 cups romaine lettuce, cut into bite-sized pieces

Combine above ingredients (saving cheese and avocado for the last minute), toss with dressing. Top with chicken and tortilla strips or chips.

Cumin-Lime Dressing

1/3 cup lime juice
1/4 tsp cumin
1/2 serrano pepper, seeded (for less heat, if desired) and minced
1 garlic clove, minced
Salt and pepper to taste
1 T honey
1/4 cup olive oil
3 T chopped fresh cilantro (optional)

Combine all ingredients, whisk in olive oil.

Tortilla strips (optional):

Cut 6 corn tortillas into strips. Heat 1/2 cup canola oil over medium-high heat. Add strips, cook about 2 minutes (watching closely so they don't get too done). Drain on paper towels. Add salt, if desired.

If you want to use as a side salad, just omit the chicken. It is great with fajitas and tacos (really, all things Mexican).


Mexican Chicken Salad
Oranges, strawberries and grapes
Dessert: Key Lime Pie


Sam said...

This salad is so light and healthy I don't feel bad eating three portions...

Amanda said...

Sounds really good right about now! I haven't had jicama in a long time. When I was 15 I'd go to this annual volleyball tournament and the sack lunches they gave us always had jicama strips in it. I don't think they gave us anything to dip them in though.

Seminary sound AMAZING. I have a hard time waking up at 6:40 every morning... sheesh!

Carrie said...

Looks yummy. Is the dressing a copy of one of the Cafe Rio dressings? My mom was in Provo a few weeks ago and asked where it was, so I told her...I had to run out the door so I didn't consult her on choices...and she ordered a salad, which is always an excellent choice - all their dressings are fabulous...but my mom doesn't usually like dressings, though I told her she would have enjoyed these she just put green salsa on it I think and she wasn't impressed. Too sad! Cafe Rio is our favorite...speaking of, we ahve a new restaurant here - Costa Vida and it is a copy cat of Cafe Rio. Pretty yummy. LOOKS GOOD...but do you really have the time to shop for groceries with your seminary schedule? Ususally my cooking problem is related to my aversion to go grocery shopping.

Tracie said...

Doesn't three portions make it a little less light, and perhaps a little less healthy? JK:) I realized in your respit how actually ADDICTED I am to your flog. Man of man, it hurt to see the picture of the chicken every time I visited. Not that the chicken wasn't great, but that my thirst for more was not quenched. No pressure or anything. The ensuing depression was easily gone by the next time I checked...but then it came back again, of course:)

Kelly McCants said...

So I can help myself plan my families meals I have made theme nights for each night of the week. Wednesday is Mexican food. I am so having this for dinner on Wednesday!

Thanks for being such a great blogger!

Kelly, ModernJune

Broke and Fabulous said...

This tastes EXACTLY like the cheesecake factory recipe, thanks for posting!