Sunday, April 29, 2012

Grilled Cumin Chicken with Tomatillo Salsa

We go in cycles with chicken--we'll eat it multiple times a week for a bit, then won't have it again for a month or so.  I partly blame Costco for this pattern because we will buy it in bulk, eat it until it is gone, then not have it again until we go back for a Saturday morning of sampling processed food and spending more money than we planned. 


Currently, we are in the eat-a-lot-of-chicken phase of our cycle.  We certainly created a winner the other night for dinner in the form of grilled cumin chicken with a fresh tomatillo salsa.  I thought we had exhausted the list of new and creative ways to grill and serve chicken, but I was clearly wrong.  The cumin rub/marinade seasons the chicken perfectly, and the slightly sweet and combination of sweet and spicy in the tomatillo salsa bring out the flavors of the chicken.  This is the perfect dish for a summer cookout and a break from the traditional bbq chicken.  We served it with the Asain Wasabi Slaw, which would also be perfect for a backyard get together.

I imagine the cumin marinade and the salsa would be great on halibut or another light white fish.  Also, the salsa is great to serve with tortilla chips all on its own.  This stuff is great.



Grilled Cumin Chicken with Tomatillo Salsa:
Adapted from Cooking Light 

For the Chicken
  • 2 chicken breasts (with fat trimmed off)
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • a number of grinds on the pepper grinder
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • enough olive oil to coat
  1. Place all of the ingredients in a ziploc back and slosh around to coat the chicken.
  2. Marinate for 15-30 minutes. 
  3. Make the tomatillo salsa (see below).
  4. Grill the chicken 6ish minutes per side, until chicken is completely cooked through.
  5. Serve with the sauce on top of the chicken
For the Tomatillo Salsa:
  • 5 or 6 tomatillos
  • 3/4 cups water with a 1/2ish teaspoon of chicken bouillon (or 3/4 cups chicken broth if you have it)
  • 2 or 3 large green onions, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 garlic clove, chopped
  • 1 jalapeño pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes (or more if you want)
  • salt and pepper to taste
  1. Discard the husks and stems from the tomatillos.  Cut the tomatillos in half.
  2. Put the tomatillos in a small saucepan, and cover with the water and bouillon (or broth).  Stir to combine.
  3. Cover and cook over medium-high heat for 8 minutes or so (or until the tomatillos are the perfect ratio of firm and soft when pierced with a fork).
  4. Drain and cool slightly.
  5. Combine the tomatillos with all of the other ingredients in a food processor.
  6. Blend until smooth or to the consistency of your liking.
  7. Serve on top of chicken (or eat it like salsa like the other one in this household has done with the leftovers).

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