Monday, September 5, 2011

Crock Pot Bajio Green Chile Chicken Salad

This is a favorite salad of mine... The Green Chile Chicken Salad from Bajio. My mouth starts drooling just as I think of it. The sweet and salty and spicy collection of flavors in this crispy salad. It is sooo yummy! I made a very extensive version of this salad about two years ago and now I have a quicker and simpler way to make this salad, with almost the same results.

The salad begins with a bed of lettuce leaves, some shredded cheese, the chicken (the most important part of the salad), some chopped tomatoes (instead of fresh pico de gallo), some corn tortilla crunchies, and then finally the cilantro lime dressing (the second most important part of the salad) with a warmed flour tortilla on the side.

In order to make this salad... you must make the chicken and the dressing. The rest is superfluous. You can add black beans or rice or any other things that you might like in tacos or salads. But like I said before... you MUST make the chicken and the dressing. So let's get on with the chicken....

Here it is in the crock pot.... ready to serve up...

Here's the recipe...

{{Bajio Crock Pot Green Chile Chicken}}

(printer friendly recipe click here)

5 frozen chicken breasts

1/2 cup salsa, medium (I used Herdez salsa)

1 Tablespoon cumin

1/2 cup brown sugar (or more to taste)

1 4-ounce can of diced green chiles (HOT)

1 medium yellow onion, sliced thinly

6-10 ounces of Sprite (almost a full can)

2 Tablespoons cornstarch

2 Tablespoons cold water (never use warm or hot water)

Combine all ingredients in a crock pot except for the cornstarch and cold water. Cook chicken on low for 5-6 hours. Remove chicken and shred. Mix together cornstarch with the cold water and whisk into the juices left in the crock pot. Add shredded chicken back into the crock pot and cook for one more hour for the juice to thicken.

**If you want a more spicy chicken, rather than sweeter, add a hotter salsa and more green chiles.

To make the corn tortillas crunchies.... Pour some oil into a frying pan and heat up over medium heat. While the oil is heating up, cut the corn tortillas in half. Then cut each half into strips that are about 1/4 inch wide.

Test the oils readiness by putting one small strip into the oil. If it starts popping and frying the tortilla... then you know the oil is ready. Place a small amount of strips into the oil and cook them until they are crisp... it only takes a few minutes. They will quickly go from crisp to golden brown to overdone... so keep an eye on them. Using a slotted spoon, remove the strips from the oil and drain them on a paper towel. Sprinkle a small amount of fine sea salt over the warm strips and toss. Set aside to use on the salad.

Here's a helpful cooking tip: When grating cheese... spray the cheese grater with cooking spray to help the cheese come off easily. Nice!

Finally... the cilantro lime dressing... Mmmmmm... yummy-ness!{{Cilantro Lime Salad Dressing}}

(printer friendly version click here)

1 package Hidden Valley Ranch Dressing (dry mix)
1 cup buttermilk
1/2 bunch of cilantro, chopped
1 small jalapeno, remove seeds
1 cup mayo
1 teaspoon fresh lime juice
1-2 tomatillos, remove outer papery skin
1 garlic clove, peeled and cut up

Blend all ingredients together in a blender. Chill for a few hours to allow the flavors to blend together. Serve on your favorite salad.

{{Crock Pot Bajio Green Chile Chicken Salad}}

(printer friendly version click here for the recipes for the whole salad)

Chopped Lettuce
Crock Pot Green Chile Chicken
Shredded Cheese
Chopped Tomatoes
Corn Tortilla Crunchies
Black beans or Rice (optional)
Cilantro Lime Dressing
Warmed Flour Tortillas, on the side

Enjoy your salad.... cause I know that I do!

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