Grilled chicken with Mexican street salad

Grilled chicken with Mexican street salad

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Love Mexican food? Try Peter Kuruvita's grilled chicken with Mexican street salad.

Originally, a Spanish ‘adobo’ or spice mix was used to preserve meats by using spices, salt, and vinegar to create a crust and ward off spoiling.

As the Spanish traversed the globe, so did their curing technique, but as skilled cooks adopted the adobo, it became used more as a delicious seasoning than cure, just like the one in this simple recipe.

Ingredients (serves 4)

Jalapeño vinaigrette

  • 125ml olive oil
  • 25ml apple cider vinegar
  • 20g pickled jalapeños, chopped finely
  • 25g garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 tbsp finely chopped fresh coriander
  • 3–4 small red radishes, thinly sliced
  • Salt and ground black pepper

Adobo chicken

  • 1 tbsp garlic powder
  • 1 tbsp paprika
  • 1 tbsp cumin seeds
  • 2 arból chillies
  • 5 Mexican bay leaves
  • 2 tsp Mexican oregano
  • 1½ tsp salt, or to taste
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 4 chicken breasts

Mexican street salad

  • ½ firm but ripe red papaya, cut into large cubes
  • 2 vine-ripened tomatoes, cut into wedges
  • ½ a small, ripe pineapple, peeled and sliced
  • 2 prickly pears, peeled and quartered (or substitute with dragonfruit)
  • 2 firm but ripe avocado
  • 1 bunch baby coriander
  • ¼ cup picked mint leaves
  • Sea salt, to taste
  • 1 tbsp olive oil

To serve

  • 4 tbsp puffed amaranth

To make the dressing, mix all the ingredients well and check the seasoning.

Grind all of the adobo spices together in a mortar and pestle or spice grinder until fine and well combined.

Place a grill on a moderate heat. Coat the chicken breasts lightly with the adobo.

Brush the grill with oil then place the breasts on to begin cooking. Baste the chicken every few minutes with a brush of olive oil to prevent them from drying out. After five minutes, turn each piece of chicken 45 degrees to create a lattice mark on the breast. After another three minutes, turn the chicken over and continue cooking the other side.

After five minutes the breast should be ready. Push gently against the thickest part and it should be firm but spring back to the touch. Remove from the heat and keep warm.

Arrange the fruit on large plates, garnish with the baby coriander and mint and then the jalapeño dressing. Slice the chicken breast on an angle against the grain in slices one cm thick, then arrange atop the salad. Dress with a little more jalapeño vinaigrette and garnish with puffed amaranth. Serve immediately.

Recipe and images courtesy of SBS Food.

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