for the past couple of months, i've been dedicated to trying at least 1 new dinner recipe a week. the criteria is simple: it must be healthy, it must be affordable, and it must be something both my husband and children will eat. well, that sounds like simple criteria, but it isn't always easy to come up with something. we've had a couple of hits and many more misses, but last night i tried 2 new recipes that were both hits in my book!
the temperature hit close to 90 degrees yesterday and i soon realized that cooking anything in the oven was out of the question, as our oven is completely inefficient and heats up the entire house (which is great in the winter, but not so great during our 9 months of summer). tortillas were on sale, so i grabbed those as well as a few other ingredients and then went online to figure out how to make my own pollo asada marinade.
i was first introduced to carne and pollo asada after i moved down to southern california and wow, is it ever tasty. it is basically just beef or chicken marinated a certain way, grilled, then chopped up into small enough pieces to put into a soft taco or burrito. the marinade that i came up with after reading about 10 recipes did not look like authentic pollo asada, nor did it smell very much like it, but i have to say it still tasted great! here's my creation, which i will call:
Garlic & Lime Grilled Chicken
1/3 cup lime juice (freshly squeezed is best, uses about 3-4 limes) 1/2 cup white wine
1/4 cup olive oil
2 tsp white vinegar
4 garlic cloves, smashed
1 tbsp onion powder (you could also just dice half an onion, but then josh wouldn't eat it)
2 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
dash of cayenne pepper (or you could add some spicy red pepper, which i didn't have on hand)
*throw all of these ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth.
*pour over 3-4 raw chicken breasts and allow to marinate in the fridge for at least 4 hours
* put chicken on the grill, cook until done, chop it up and enjoy!
we ate our chicken wrapped in tortillas with homemade guacamole, tomatoes and lettuce, but it would also taste great on a salad (which is how i am going to enjoy the leftovers today).
speaking of salad.... i've been experimenting with making my own salad dressings lately. mostly because of how simple and inexpensive it is, but also because i've come to realize that the long list of naughty ingredients on salad dressing jars just isn't good for my family's health. i had to make a special shopping trip to make a delectable Creamy Cilantro Tomatillo Dressing (first time purchasing a tomatillo!), but it was worth it because i will for sure be making this recipe again and again. i won't bother typing out the recipe, because you can just click on this link to view it, but i will note that i made a couple of changes to it: i left out the jalapeno for the sake of my children, and found that the dressing was rather runny, so i increased the amount of greek yogurt and mayonnaise (try using veganaise instead; you won't be able to tell the difference). if you can't buy tomatillos where you live, just use a regular tomato instead, or even half of a cucumber!
the pairing of chicken soft tacos with a huge salad drizzled with that dressing was perfect for a hot day. the flavors were light and cool and everyone in my family enjoyed it!