With some pretty hefty cooking time coming up on our Memorial Day weekend camping trip, I decided to make simple fare the rest of this week at home. This way we can enjoy easy-to-prepare, small-portion dinners before I have to prepare a couple of crowd-satisfying feasts. Last night’s dinner was just that simple, yet still healthy and delicious. A super-quick blend of salsa and fresh bell peppers serves double duty as salad dressing and seasoning for the chicken fajita salad. It’s a recipe a novice cook could make as well as a seasoned chef. Depending on the type of salsa you use, the salad will vary in heat.
Chicken Fajita Salad
1 Teaspoon Canola Oil
2 Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts
½ Teaspoons Ground Cumin
1 Teaspoon Chili Powder
½ Teaspoon Paprika
½ Teaspoon Garlic Powder
½ Teaspoon Onion Powder
Salt & Pepper, to taste
1/2 Cup Prepared Salsa
1/2 medium Onion, chopped
¼ Each of Yellow, Orange, & Red Bell Peppers
2 Cups Lettuce (we used baby Spinach because it’s what we had on hand)
1/2 Cup Shredded Sharp Cheddar Cheese
2 8-inch Corn Tortillas cut into thin strips
4 Tablespoons Vegetable Oil, for frying tortilla strips
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. In a non-stick skillet heat oil over medium high heat.
3. Add vegetable oil to small saucepan, set to medium high heat, add and fry tortilla strips until golden brown and crispy (5 to 8 minutes). Remove from oil and allow to cool and crisp up while you prepare the rest of the meal.
4. Mix all spices together and coat both sides of the chicken breasts. Sprinkle 1/4 teaspoon over tortilla chips to coat.
5. Cook both breasts 3 minutes on each side until a nice, almost black, crust forms; then place in the oven for 5 minutes or until chicken is fully cooked.
6. While chicken is in the oven, julienne the onions and peppers.
7. Remove chicken from oven and set aside on a cutting board to rest.
8. Add onions and peppers to pan and begin to sauté until onions become translucent, then add salsa and heat through.
9. Dice chicken and add to the onion mixture.
10. Mix well until all flavors are combined (about 5 minutes).
11. Serve over lettuce and sprinkle with cheese and tortilla strips. You can add sour cream and guacamole to your liking.