This is one of our favorite main dish salads. I make it all year long, but mostly in spring and fall, when the greens are abundant. This is a great salad for the beginning and end of the season, because it doesn't call for tomatoes. I'm a tomato snob, and I really only eat them in season, so I'm always looking for non-tomato recipes for the rest of the year. This is a very versatile recipe, too, because it can be served as-is (and that's how we ate it this week), or it can be served as the filling for tacos, burritos, chalupas, or the like.
Mexican Chicken Salad
adapted from Mexico, One Plate at a Time, by Rick Bayless
4 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
a little less than 2/3 cup olive oil
2-4 canned chipotle chiles en adobo, finely chopped
1 small head Napa cabbage, thinly sliced (about 5 cups)
1 large carrot, peeled and chopped into 1/4-inch pieces
1 small red onion, thinly sliced
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1-1/2 cups coarsely shredded cooked chicken (I usually use 1 breast if I'm cooking just for this recipe; otherwise, use leftovers)
1 large ripe avocado, peeled, pitted and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1/3 cup coarsely grated Mexican queso añejo or other dry grating cheese, such as Romano or Parmesan (let's be honest--it's almost always Parmesan)
In a large bowl, whisk together the vinegar, olive oil and chipotles. Season generously with salt, usually about a generous 1/2 teaspoon. Add the cabbage, carrot, onion, cilantro and chicken. Toss everything together and let stand for 15 minutes. Taste and season with additional salt if necessary. Add the avocado and cheese and mix gently. Serve as is or with warm corn tortillas to make tacos.
This post is linked to Tasty Tuesday at Balancing Beauty and Bedlam. Lots of great ideas over there. Check it out!