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Chicken Tostada Salad

This is a refreshed version of the ubiquitous taco salad, with lean chicken and chopped vegetables piled high on a crispy tortilla. For a shortcut, omit frying the tortillas and serve the chicken salad over large handfuls of good-quality corn tortilla chips.

Ingredients:

For the lime vinaigrette:

  • Grated zest and juice of 2 limes
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/8 tsp. freshly ground pepper
  • 2/3 cup olive oil
  •  
  • 1 can (15 oz.) black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 cups fresh corn kernels (from about 2 ears of corn, grilled if
      desired)
  • 2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 4 canned green chilies, chopped
  • 1 cup corn oil
  • 4 corn tortillas, each 6 inches in diameter, halved
  • 1 small head romaine lettuce, cut into bite-size pieces
  • 2 cups shredded cooked chicken meat
  • 1 avocado, peeled, pitted and sliced
  • Fresh cilantro leaves for garnish (optional)
  • Sliced green onion for garnish (optional)

Directions:

To make the vinaigrette, in a bowl, whisk together the lime zest, lime juice, garlic, salt and pepper. Add the olive oil in a thin stream, whisking constantly until the vinaigrette is smooth.

Transfer 3 Tbs. of the vinaigrette to a large bowl and add the black beans, corn, cherry tomatoes and chilies; mix gently. Reserve the remaining vinaigrette. Let the salsa stand for at least 10 minutes to blend the flavors.

Meanwhile, in a fry pan over medium-high heat, warm the corn oil. When it is hot, slip 3 tortilla halves into the oil and cook until golden and almost crisp, 1 to 2 minutes. Using tongs, transfer to paper towels to drain. Repeat with the remaining tortilla halves.

Add the lettuce to the reserved vinaigrette and toss to coat. Place 2 fried tortilla halves on each of 4 plates and divide the lettuce among them. Spoon the salsa over the lettuce and top with the chicken and avocado. Garnish with cilantro and green onion and serve immediately. Serves 4.

Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Salad of the Day, by Georgeanne Brennan (Weldon Owen, 2012).