What I came up with was a salad that's as pretty to look at as it is to eat: Pollo Confetti Salad. I chose this name because all the colorful components remind me of festive confetti at a party. This salad is bursting with flavor, and it's healthy to boot! It features spiced chunks of Tyson Grilled & Ready chicken breast, avocado, homemade black bean-corn salsa, shredded Mexican blend cheese, and garlicky flour tortilla "croutons." When it was time to serve the salad, I topped it with a chipotle-infused Ranch dressing.
Pollo Confetti Salad
A Weekend Gourmet Original Recipe
A Weekend Gourmet Original Recipe
Step 1: Make the black bean-corn salsa by combining the following ingredients: 1 cup frozen corn kernels, 1 cup drained black beans, 1 seeded and diced roma tomato, 2 sliced green onions, 2 grated garlic cloves, the juice of one lime, 1/4 cup olive oil, 1/2 tsp. cumin, 1/2 tsp. coriander, and salt & pepper to taste. Stir to combine and set aside in the fridge while you prep the rest of the ingredients.
Step 2: Dice three of the thawed chicken breasts into bite-sized cubes. Place them in a bowl and add a squeeze of lime juice, 1/2 tsp. cumin, 1/2 tsp. coriander, 1/2 tsp. smoked paprika, 1 tsp. garlic powder, and salt & pepper to taste. Stir to evenly coat the chicken pieces with the spices. Set in the fridge to keep the chicken cold until it's time to serve.
Step 3: Using a sharp knife, cut half a head of romaine lettuce into ribbons. Then make the dressing by combining 1/2 cup of your favorite Ranch dressing with the sauce from a can of chipotle chiles. How much you use depends on how much spice you want, but I think 2 tsp. should do the trick. Stir well to combine. Place the lettuce on your serving platter, then put the platter and the dressing in the fridge until you're ready to assemble.
Step 4: To make the garlic tortilla "croutons," stack three flour tortillas and cut into small squares...you can discard the round ends to do this. Put them in a bowl, along with 1 tbs. olive oil, 1 tsp. salt, 1/2 tsp. black pepper, and 1 tsp. garlic powder. Stir well to combine, and place on a non-stick baking sheet. Bake in a 375 oven for about 10 minutes...until the "croutons" are golden and a bit crisp.
Step 5: To assemble the salad, arrange ingredients in rows down the ribbons of lettuce on the platter. I used the following order: the garlic tortilla "croutons," the black bean-corn salsa, the seasoned chicken chunks, the Mexican blend shredded cheese, and one diced avocado topped with a squeeze of lime juice and some salt. Drizzle the chipotle Ranch dressing over the top. To serve, use salad tongs to place a bit of each ingredient onto salad plates. Toss to combine the dressing with the ingredients.
This salad is literally bursting with flavor! The seasoned chicken is juicy and tender, the avocado and cheese are creamy and cooling, the black-bean corn salsa is tangy and spicy, and the garlic tortilla "croutons" and shredded romaine provide the crunch. It's all tossed with that delish just-spicy-enough Ranch dressing. Add it all up, and you've got the perfect meal for your next fiesta. It's a perfect dish for entertaining on warm summer evenings!
To save even more time, you could easily substitute broken tortilla chips for the garlic flour tortilla "croutons." By the way, you'll most likely have some of the black bean-corn salsa left once you've assembled your salad...the leftovers are great served with small scoop-shaped tortilla chips. I hope you'll give my Pollo Confetti Salad a try and let me know what you think!!