Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Chicken with strawberry & avocado salsa

This is the story of a dinner that almost never was.  A meal that, for weeks, became known as "the impossible dinner."

Impossible not because of the level of skill required to make it (read: none) or difficulty wrangling all of the necessary ingredients (read: also none).  But nearly impossible because we couldn't seem to keep the aforementioned ingredients around for long.

As it turns out, we have a bit of a strawberry problem.  And a very major avocado problem.

After miserable, awful, dreadful, berry-less winters, we go a bit crazy in the summer months.  Matt and I become strawberry (and blueberry) aficionados; at any given time, we can tell you where to get the best and most inexpensive berries for your buck.  It doesn't matter if we buy 1 or 4 pounds of strawberries at the beginning of the week -- they'll be gone within a few days.

But, in this instance, a lack of berries wasn't the problem that plagued us.   It was that cursed avocado.  (Make sure you draw out "cursed" to two syllables for added effect.)

When I said we have a very major avocado problem, I wasn't kidding.  I can't tell you how many times I've bought avocados with the intent to incorporate them into a recipe.

The routine goes something like this: Avocados are hand-picked and purchased at grocery store.  Husband helps to unpack bags upon arriving at home.  Husband exclaims, "Guac-a-mole!"  Wife explains that avocado is not for guacamole but another recipe.  Husband insists that guacamole would be "so good" right now.  Wife caves and immediately makes guacamole, which they promptly devour standing in the kitchen.  Chips are optional; bread, vegetables, or spoons are perfectly acceptable guacamole partners.

It's happened when I've wanted to make so many things: black bean burgersSmashed chick pea & avocado wraps.  My beloved salmon tostadas.   And this recipe... four times.

I finally had to outsmart myself and pick a super unripe avocado so we couldn't make guacamole right away, hoping it would last until the chosen time.

Guess what?  It worked!  My first real success as a 30-year-old came when I outsmarted myself.  And, really, when I made one of the freshest and most delicious meals we've had all summer: chicken with strawberry avocado salsa.

Lean chicken breasts are seasoned simply with salt, pepper, and onion powder, and cooked to juicy perfection (feel free to grill 'em, if you like).  They're then topped with a quick strawberry and avocado salsa (3 ingredients, y'all!) and finished with a squeeze of lime juice.

Fresh, simple, fast and delicious!  What a great way to jazz up chicken.  Though I'm afraid to say this isn't going to do anything for our strawberry and avocado problems... first world problems, right? :)

One year ago: Chocolate waffles; Grandma's ice cream Oreo dessert
Two years ago: Fig & proscuitto grilled cheese
Three years ago: Tomato & corn pie
Four years ago: Matt's haluski with bacon

Chicken with Strawberry & Avocado Salsa
-serves 2

A few notes: This was great with chicken, but would be just as delicious over various fish, shrimp, or as a standalone dip for chips, too.

2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
Olive oil
Onion powder
1 ripe avocado, pitted and diced
6-8 strawberries, quartered
1 lime, quartered

Brush chicken breasts with olive oil and season with salt, pepper, and onion powder.  In a skillet over medium high heat, cook chicken for 5 to 7 minutes on each side.  Meanwhile, place strawberries and avocado in a medium bowl.  Add juice of 1/2 of lime, tossing to coat and combine.  Plate cooked chicken and divide salsa equally over each portion.  Serve immediately and enjoy!

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