Monday, October 8, 2012

Pistachio Crusted Chicken Tacos

A former co-worker recommended a healthy South Beach Diet recipe to me. And before you ask, no she wasn't kindly insinuating that I needed to cut back on desserts. Wait....was she? Anyway...

The recipe sat in my cupboard, untouched, for almost a month. It intrigued me, but I kept passing it up for tried-and-true family favorites. After a long spell of non-inspiration in the kitchen, I decided this recipe was just what I needed to break my funk. Except, it didn't just break my funk. It shattered it! As I started prepping, I decided to do an overhaul on the original recipe. I changed it from a salad to a taco. Yes, while the rest of the world is obsessed with turning every recipe into a paleo-friendly version of itself, you can always count on me to do just the opposite.

A touch of carbs, a smackling of dairy products, and VOILA! Pistachio Crusted Chicken Tacos! Honestly, the reason I went with a taco is because we are all addicted to homemade flour tortillas (best tortillas ever!). I turned the salad "dressing" into a taco sauce. I think that sauce was my favorite part.

(Forgive me, I know you aren't supposed to put white food on a white plate. But aside from some plastic dinosaur tablewayre, these IKEA plates are all I have).
Here's the recipe-- my version, that is. I absolutely LOVE pistachios. I'm lucky any pistachios made it into this meal because I was eating them like crazy.
1/2 cup pistachios, shelled and finely food processed
2-4 Skinless chicken breasts (Use 2 breast for two people- this will give you leftovers)
2 Tbsp Olive Oil
1/2 cup sweet onions, diced
Diced tomatoes
Shredded cheese (moterrey jack, swiss, mozzarella, or even pepper jack)
Salt and pepper
1 Tbsp diced sweet onion
1 large avocado, pitted and peeled (I just used 3 Tbsp of guacamole)
2 Tbsp olive oil
3 Tbsp lime juice
1 Tbsp water
Preheat oven to 375
1. Mix the processed nuts with 1/2 teaspoon of salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. My nuts were already salted so I skipped the salt here. Press the chicken breasts into the nut mixture, being sure to coat as well as possible. (I cut my chicken breasts in half but it's probably not necessary, I just wanted more nut coating).
2. Heat 1 Tbsp oil in skillet over medium-high heat. Cook the breasts, 2 minutes per side. Then place them in the oven until they reach an internal temperature of 160 degrees. (I love my meat thermometer!). When they cool a little, slice them into long pieces.
3. Heat 1 Tbsp of oil in skillet. Add diced onions and sprinkle with 1/4 tsp salt and 1/4 tsp pepper. Cool until the onion is browned.
4. To make the sauce, in a food processor, process the avocado (guacamole), white onions, olive oil, lime juice, and water until well mixed.  
5. Make your homemade tortillas.
6.  Assemble by placing cilantro, cheese, onions, tomatoes, and chicken in a tortillas. Dribble the sauce on top and enjoy!
If you wanted to avoid the carbs, you could always eat this in a lettuce wrap instead of a tortilla. Nevermind, forget I said that, homemade tortillas are just way too good to pass us!

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