I am sitting outside on a beautiful summer day. It is just on the verge of being chilly. Just enough to not be hot, but not enough to need a jacket or even to put on shoes. Our cousins are visiting and that means five kids under the age of five. The kids are teaming together to push the baby up the slope of yard while chanting “everyone push! everyone push!” Then Uncle Robert/Dad is spotting it rolling back down the slope. It is so sweet and keeping everyone entertained. Even me, who is supposed to be writing.
In a bit the kids will all be going to bed, and the adults will get to have game time. Maybe Kings Cribbage maybe Settlers of Catan. I am thinking that I might just have to make some honey vanilla pistachios for snacks. I love when family is visiting! They have lived in Texas until recently and being as we are in Missouri, that means we do not get to see each other often. But, it is always grand when we do.
Other wonderful parts of t0day included my son turning 5 plus blueberry pancakes in honor of that, cooking dinner with a friend, and taking everyone pottery painting. Happy sigh.
This has nothing to do with Grilled Chicken Salad or Creamy Mango Chipotle Dressing, but, it has been a lovely day and I just wanted to let you be a part of it. Now, we will return to our scheduled information of today’s recipe.
On a whim the other day, I decided to grill the chicken thighs that I was serving with salad. I like spice rubs on grills because it really just goes well with the smokiness. I decided on a taco style seasoning mix. The chicken alone is incredible– a touch of heat, lots of spices, charred grill marks, and a bit of smokiness. But, it gets better…
…by drenching it in a creamy mango dressing. Now, you could just eat strips of spiced grilled chicken and the addicting dressing. It would be tasty, but not much of a meal. So, a bit of fresh crunch, some more creaminess from avocado, and the incredibleness that is grilled pineapple. Oh look…it’s a salad.
Eat it and feel healthy. Or, just forget it’s healthy as you devour the rainbow of colors, textures, and flavors.
- For The Chicken
- 1½ lb boneless skinless chicken thighs
- 1½ tablespoons heat stable oil (I use refined coconut oil)
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 2 teaspoons onion powder
- 2 teaspoons garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1 teaspoon sweet paprika
- ¼ teaspoon dried cayenne pepper
- ¼ teaspoon ground dried chipotle
- ⅛ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ⅛ teaspoon ground allspice
- For the Dressing
- 1 ataulfo mango
- juice of two limes (2-3 tablespoons)
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 tablespoons refined coconut or other low flavor oil
- ½ teaspoon salt
- For the salad
- 1 small pineapple grilled 5-7 minutes per piece
- 1 avocado, cut into slices
- 1 red pepper, chopped
- 2 heads of romaine lettuce, ripped into bite size pieces
- I am very unfamiliar with an outdoor grill. I am giving instructions for an cast iron grill pan, it can be adapted to a grill, I just won't be able to really tell you how long things take or what temperature to use as my experience is nill.
- Preheat a grill pan over medium heat.
- Put the chicken, oil, and spices in a bowl. Stir to coat the chicken with the spices and oil. Set aside to marinate in the spices while you grill the pineapple.
- Peel the pineapple and cut it in half, remove the core with a corer. Slice into rounds, then into half moons (they take up less space on the pan). Grill the pineapple for about 5 minutes per side, until it gets nicely defined char marks. I had to do it in two batches. Cut the half moons into quarters. Set aside.
- Turn the heat up to medium high. As it is getting hotter go ahead make the dressing by blending all of the "for the dressing" ingredients together.
- Grill the chicken on the quite hot pan for about 10 minutes total. I had shifted/rotated it every minute or two to keep it from burning. Flip halfway through and cook the other side. Cook until cooked all the through. My preference with dark meat is a bit over, and the 10 minutes did that for me. If it is over charring without cooking threw turn the heat down and cook it a bit slower.
- Mix the pineapple with the rest of the salad ingredients. Layer salad, chicken, and dressing for each plate.