Chipotles are actually smoke-dried jalapeño peppers. Not sure why they need a different name instead of just "dried jalapeños." Guess it's kind of like how we call dried plums prunes :) Chipotles come in many forms (dried, powder, etc.) but the most common form I've seen used in recipes are the canned chipotles in adobo sauce. If you use just the chipotle chiles in this salad, it's only mildly spicy. If you particularly enjoy a lot of heat (like I do) you can add extra chipotle chiles and a teaspoon or two of the adobo sauce.
I'm always looking for quick and easy weeknight dinner ideas and this definitely fit the bill. Plus it's pretty healthy, so even better. I love tex mex dishes with black beans and corn. Top it off with some avocado and I'm sold :) This salad really comes together in just minutes. You can prepare the dressing and cook the chicken the night before. Or, save even more time buy using a store bought/precooked rotisserie chicken. For a little extra crunch in your salad, add some deep fried tortilla strips or crushed tortilla chips.
Chipotle Chicken Taco Salad
from Cooking Light
1/3 cup chopped fresh cilantro
2/3 cup light sour cream
1 tablespoon minced chipotle chile, canned in adobo sauce (I used about 1.5 tbsp mince chipotles + 2 tsp adobo sauce)
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon chili powder
4 teaspoons fresh lime juice
1/4 teaspoon salt
4 cups shredded romaine lettuce
2 cups chopped roasted skinless, boneless chicken breasts (about 2 breasts) (I seasoned some chicken with salt and pepper, then grilled it on the George Foreman Grill)
1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
1/2 cup diced peeled avocado
1/3 cup thinly vertically sliced red onion
1 (15-ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 (8 3/4-ounce) can no-salt-added whole-kernel corn, rinsed and drained
To prepare dressing, combine first 7 ingredients, stirring well.
To prepare salad, combine lettuce and remaining ingredients in a large bowl. Drizzle dressing over salad; toss gently to coat. Serve immediately.
Tip: Add a spoonful of adobo sauce for a spicier salad. Kidney or pinto beans also taste great in this dish.
Yield: 4 servings (serving size: 2 1/2 cups)