Southwest Chicken Salad

Fantastic Southwest Salad

I do love a good-refreshing salad, especially one that has a ton of different stuff (I do like variety). This salad is my version of a light and refreshing southwest salad. To be perfectly honest, I had just made this salad bowl for myself and was walking to the table when I stopped mid-step and took this picture to send an alert of what dinner was for the night. Therefore, you don’t get an “excellent” view of the salad because I was not planning on posting it, but after looking at the photo a couple of times more I thought, ehhh, why not?

Yeilds about 4 servings

Pickled Red Onions:

2 c water

2/3 c white distilled vinegar

2 tsp white granulated sugar

2 red onions, thinly sliced

The Rest:

2 large chicken breast

1 1/2 tbs olive oil

1 tbs chili powder

1/4 tsp cumin powder

1/2 tsp onion powder

1/4 tsp garlic powder

salt and pepper to taste

2 yellow corn tortillas

8 c iceberg lettuce, diced

4 c romaine lettuce, diced

2 c grape tomatoes, sliced in half

2 avocados, halved and sliced

1 c black beans, cooked, rinsed and drained

1 c sweet corn, drained

1 c monterey-jack cheese, shredded

4 tbs semi-sweet jalapenos

1/2 c pickled red onions

2/3 c cilantro, chopped

Preheat oven to 400°

Make your pickled onions by bringing water, vinegar and sugar to a boil in a non-reactive sauce pot. Stuff clean canning jars with the onion slices and carefully fill each jar with the hot liquid. Set aside.

Coat raw chicken breast in oil. Combine chili powder, cumin, onion powder, garlic powder, salt and pepper in a small bowl. Mix well and coat chicken breast front and back. Arrange on nonstick lined sheet pan. Bake for 30-45 minutes until cooked through. While chicken is cooking, heat your deep fryer to 338 degrees. Cut the corn tortillas in half, then in strips. When the deep fryer is ready, fry the tortilla strips, moving them around with a fryer tool to ensure they cook evenly. Transfer to a paper towel to drain. If your chicken is ready, remove from oven and allow to rest while you put the salad together.
In a large bowl, mix the iceberg and romaine together and put about 3 cups of the salad mixture into each salad bowl. Sprinkle 1/2 c grape tomatoes in each bowl, followed by 1/2 an avocado, 1/4 c black beans, 1/4 c corn, 1/4 c shredded cheese, 1 tbs jalapenos and a few red onions. Use two forks to shred the chicken breast. Top each salad with about 1/2 c of chicken and a sprinkle of cilantro.

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