Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Southwestern Chicken Avocado Salad

Southwestern Chicken Avocado Salad

1 cup Finely Chopped Celery (about 4 ribs of celery off the stalk)
1/2 cup Black Beans
1/2 cup Whole Kernel Corn
2 Tbsp Green Chilies
2 cups Cooked Boneless Chicken Breast Shredded
1 pinch of Garlic Salt
1 head of Leafy Green Lettuce
2 Avocados Chopped into Chunks
1/2 cup of Mozzarella Cheese
Raspberry Vinaigrette Salad Dressing

Slice the celery, and then dice the celery even smaller into even smaller parts.  Heat a no-stick pan on medium heat and add butter.  Once the butter is melted, put the celery into the pan and let it cook for a few minutes to soften the celery.

Use about a half of a can of black beans and a half of a can of kernel corn.  Add it to the celery and cook it in the pan.

Add a small amount of Garlic Salt. 

Add chiles.

 Add chicken shreds.  About now, it will be smelling pretty incredible.

Nicole didn't want anything on her salad, just a small side salad with lettuce and a lot of ranch dressing.  If a salad has beans on it, she won't eat it.  Nicole likes the plain version no avocados, no chicken, no nothing.  Nicole likes plain, plain, and more plain.  The salad below is Nicole's favorite.  I, on the other hand, have to dress it up a little.

Back to the no-stick pan, I am still allowing all of these flavors to warm together.  It smells fantastic.

After I finish cooking the chicken and veggies, I take them off the burner and let them sit for a minute.  I don't want to put warm veggies on my salad and wilt the lettuce so I wait just a minute for the chicken and veggies to cool.  In the mean time, I cut the green leaf lettuce into chunks.

 Top the lettuce with the chicken and the vegetables. 

I use fresh, ripe avocados.  How to tell if an avocado is ready for use is if it's black, it's usually ripe and ready.  I like to choose avocados that have a peel that black in color and is a little bit loose peel.  If your fingers can get underneath the peel and peel it back like an orange, that's usually a good sign that the avocado is ripe and ready.  Sometimes the shell of the peel will stick to the green inner part of the avocado.  That's okay if that happens, just slice the peel away with a paring knife.  Go along and chop up the avocados into chunks.

Top the salad with avocado.  This is a great potential end to the salad.  These are the last steps, and the picture below is the final result.  The only things that are missing are the final toppings.   Really, a person could top this salad however they want.  Sunflower seeds and ranch dressing would work great, but I'm in a different mood. The only things I am going to add at this point are mozzarella cheese and raspberry vinaigrette. 

I add about a handful of mozzarella cheese, about 1/4 cup.

I add the raspberry vinaigrette.  I like Ken's Steakhouse.  It's pretty yummy.

 This is my finished result.  The raspberry vinaigrette adds a lot of color, it's flavorful, and low calorie.

This salad is mouthwatering delicious.  It was precisely what I was craving.  I was in the mood for something full of flavor, but not too spicy and not too acidic.  This salad is great.  My only complaint about my own cooking is that the salad is so filling, it would be better broken down into smaller servings.  The Southwestern Chicken Avocado Salad should be split into smaller portions.  It should be placed on a smaller plate and shared with several guests.

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