Bone and dice the chicken. Heat a small amount of vegetable oil in a large frying pan until it starts to smoke. Add the chicken cubes and fry over medium-high heat, stirring frequently, until they are browned (2 or 3 minutes). To the chicken, add the drained kidney beans, salt and chili powder. Reduce heat and simmer 10 minutes.
Chop the tomatoes, onion and lettuce. Grate the cheese. Toss them together in a salad bowl with the salad dressing and picante sauce. Slice the avocado and add to the salad. Break the tortilla chips into flakes and add to the salad.
Mix the cooked chicken and beans into the cold salad. Decorate with extra chips and slices of avocado and tomato. Serve immediately.
* A simple main-dish salad with Mexican seasonings — I got this recipe from an old roommate, Ann-Marie Tarter. My husband revised it to use chicken instead of the hamburger that her version called for. It's a very simple, tasty hot-weather main dish. It doesn't keep as leftovers: you have to eat all of it immediately or else throw it away. I like to serve it
* The chips get soggy within 5 to 10 minutes after the meat has been added to the salad, so don't do that step until you are ready to eat.
* This recipe works best with iceberg lettuce. The more exotic varieties of lettuce wilt instantly when the hot chicken and beans are mixed in; iceberg lettuce keeps its crunch.
: Difficulty: easy. : Time: 15 minutes preparation. : Precision: no need to measure.
: Loretta Guarino Reid : DEC Western Software Laboratory, Palo Alto, California, USA
Your Mexican Chef's Salad is ready. Bon appetit!
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