This peppy chicken salad is rich with a variety of southwestern spices, crunchy orange bell peppers, sweet kernels of corn and fiery bits of jalapeno. Serve over greens, in a pita pocket, or in a tortilla wrap.
INGREDIENTS (for 4 servings):
- 1 lemon, thinly sliced
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns
- 3/4 teaspoon dried thyme, divided
- 2 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
- 3/4 teaspoon paprika
- 1/3 cup light mayonnaise
- 1/4 cup sour cream
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
- 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1 1/2 cups fresh corn, cooked and cut from the cob
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
- 3/4 cup diced orange bell pepper
- 1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced
Fill a large skillet with 1 inch (2.5 cm) of water. Add lemon slices, bay leaf, peppercorns and 2/3 of the thyme, and bring to boiling over high heat. Add chicken, reduce heat to low and simmer for 15-18 minutes, turning chicken once, until juices run clear and chicken is no longer pink. Remove chicken from liquid and set aside to cool.
In a small skillet, stir together the paprika and remaining thyme over medium-low heat for 2 minutes. In a small bowl, whisk together the toasted paprika mixture, mayonnaise, sour cream, salt, ground pepper and nutmeg until evenly blended.
Cube cooled chicken and transfer to a medium bowl. Add prepared dressing, corn, cilantro, orange pepper and jalapeno and toss until evenly coated. Serve warm, or refrigerate until ready to serve.