Grilled Cilantro Chicken with Pickled Tomato & Avocado Salsa

Normally I am the one sharing recipes with family and friends but every once in a while they are kind enough to send me one!  I love having new things to try so although the words ‘Pickled Tomato’ scared me (a lot) I felt obliged to give it a try.  I have a serious aversion to large chunks of tomato so I made pico-de-gallo instead.  I also made a few other minor changes so I could use what I had on hand as well as make it Paleo.  This recipe is a definite keeper and going in the book.  You can find the original recipe from Sunset Magazine here, I am sure their picture is much prettier. -TJ

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Salsa:

  • 1 lb. Roma tomatoes, diced
  • 1 Serrano chili, minced
  • 1/2 c. red onion, diced
  • 1/2 c. distilled white vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp. honey
  • 1 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
  • 4 tsp. minced fresh ginger
  • 1 Tbsp. minced fresh garlic
  • 1 tsp. ground mustard
  • 2 tsp. fresh ground black pepper
  • 2 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1 tsp. cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 tsp. turmeric
  • Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 firm, ripe avocados

Chicken:

  • 1/4 c. extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 c. fresh lime juice
  • 1/2 c. chopped cilantro
  • 1 Tbsp. ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1/2 tsp. fresh ground black pepper
  • boneless, skinless chicken thighs (whole or strips)

To make salsa:  In a bowl, combine tomatoes, chili, and onion; set aside.  In a medium saucepan over high heat, bring vinegar to a boil.  Add honey and salt, cook, stirring until dissolved, about 1 minute.  Remove from heat; set aside.  In a separate bowl, combine ginger, garlic and dry spices.  In a separate saucepan heat 2 Tbsp. olive oil over medium high heat until rippling.  Add ginger mixture and cook, stirring until fragrant, 1 minute.  Remove from heat, stir in seasoned vinegar and pour over tomato mixture.  Let salsa cool then cover and chill at least 1 hour and up to 4 hours.  About 1 hour before serving, cut avocados into 3/4 inch chunks, add to salsa, bring to room temperature.

To make chicken:  In a large bowl, combine olive oil, lime juice, and seasonings.  Add chicken, making sure to coat well.  Let stand at room temperature, turning occasionally, 30-45 minutes.  Heat a grill to high and grill chicken, covered, turning often until no longer pink in the center.  The time will vary depending on which chicken pieces you use.  Transfer chicken to a platter and spoon salsa on top, saving half of the liquid for another use.

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