Well, hello! I’m so excited to share this simple but delicious recipe with you! “But wait, you crazy Canuck,” you say, “what do YOU know about Southwestern cuisine?” Fair enough – as a pale-skinned, Canadian gringa, probably less than most. But I do know that any meal featuring corn, black beans, tomatoes, lime and spices screams Southwestern to me, and after making this recipe, I think it will make you a believer, too. It’s bursting with fresh flavours (but the sneaky secret is that you can get away with using canned goods so you can experience flavours of the Southwest all year ’round) and is a quick family favourite. Bonus: there’s only one dish, so prep is fast and easy and clean-up is, too!
Not to toot my own horn (which of course means that I am about to toot my own horn), but one thing I have gotten really good at over the past eight or nine months (no, not a pregnancy, just the length of time since I took over nearly-full kitchen duties from Mr. Golden Graham because I wanted to explore and devote some time and effort to some detailed nutrition and fitness strategies) is making delicious, nutritious and FAST, family-pleasing suppers. Count ’em – that’s four meal-time attributes and on a good day, I’d take any two together. But this meal does all four! Let me show you how I (and you can) do it, too!
Here are the ingredients. It’s always nice to use fresh, but the beauty of the recipe and part of its speed is that you probably already have most, if not all, of these on hand in your cupboards already (if not, they’re easy to pick up during your regularly-scheduled grocery shopping trip – no need to search for specialty ingredients, and no need to worry about using them in the recipe right away because they’re mostly non-perishable anyway).
You can, of course, use fresh ingredients to substitute for some or all of the canned items mentioned but you will need to have prepared these in advance or expect to spend more time in the kitchen getting this meal together – an altogether worthy endeavour, if you’re up for it!
My husband is not a fan of cilantro (I know, but I married him anyway), so I use dried coriander (the ground seeds of the cilantro plant – cilantro refers to the leafy green part), for a similar but more subtle flavour profile:
Here’s the one fresh star of my show, the perfectly ripe, perfectly round, and perfectly red cherry tomatoes in season at my local grocery store (hard-to-find ingredients that we take for granted in North American, such as bottles of vanilla extract, make me wail and gnash my teeth as far as a grievance of grocery shopping in South Korea, but I have to give my accolades for their ability to source and stock gorgeous seasonal produce all year round):
Now, to put it all together:
Simple Southwestern Chicken Skillet
A family-friendly meal bursting with fresh flavours, this simple, delicious Southwestern dish comes together in one pan, making prep and clean-up a cinch!
Author: The Golden Graham Girl
1 tbsp (15mL) extra virgin olive oil
2, 12-oz (340g) cans of chicken breast meat, packed in water, drained and shredded with a fork or 2-3 cooked chicken breasts, shredded
1 cup (164g) canned sweet whole kernel corn, drained and rinsed OR 1 cup of fresh roasted or boiled corn kernels off the cob
1, 15-oz (420g) can of black beans, drained and rinsed with cold water OR equal amount of soaked black beans
1 dry pint (approx 2 dozen) cherry tomatoes, halved or quartered
1 tbsp (15mL) lime juice (fresh or bottled)
1/4 cup (15g) chopped fresh cilantro OR 2 tsp (6g) dried coriander
Optional 1/4 tsp celery salt
Optional 1 tsp cayenne pepper or 2-3 fresh sliced hot peppers of choice
Optional shredded cheese(s) of choice (cheddar, Monterey Jack, etc.)
1. Heat the oil in a large non-stick pan or skillet over medium heat.
2. Add the chicken, corn and beans and stir until heated through.
3. Add the tomatoes, lime juice and seasonings. Increase heat slightly and cook briefly until tomatoes soften and liquid is absorbed/boiled off.
4. Add seasonings to taste.
5. Wow your family/friends/dinner guests.
NUTRITION INFORMATION (without cheese)
Calories: 348 Fat: 7.8g Carbohydrates: 23.5g Sugar: 18.9g Fiber: 7.1g Protein: 45.8g
Enjoy immediately or refrigerate in a covered container. A stand-alone meal in and of itself, you can also roll this up in a tortilla as a burrito or use as a filling for enchiladas. It’s great served over or alongside rice or with yellow corn tortilla chips and guacamole. Top with your favourite grated cheese and sliced peppers for extra zest. The sky’s the limit!