Hot-or-Not Grilled Sliced Chicken with Cheesy Polenta and Guacamole Salad

September 2010
Hot-or-Not Grilled Sliced Chicken with Cheesy Polenta and Guacamole Salad

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Makes: 4 servings

Ingredients
  • 2 poblano chiles
  • Extra-virgin olive oil (EVOO ), for drizzling
  • 4 pieces skinless, boneless chicken breast
  • Salt and pepper
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • A handful cilantro or flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
  • 2 sprigs rosemary, finely chopped
  • 2 teaspoons chipotle chile powder (hot) or sweet smoked paprika (not), about 2/3 palmful
  • About 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 cup fresh or frozen corn kernels
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 1 cup quick-cooking polenta
  • 1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
  • 1 ripe avocado, sliced
  • 2 vine-ripe tomatoes, sliced into wedges
  • 1/2 small red onion, very thinly sliced
  • Juice of 1 large lemon
Directions
  1. Over an open flame or in the broiler, char the poblanos until blackened all over, turning occasionally, 10 to 12 minutes. Place in a bowl, cover and let cool. Peel, seed and chop the poblanos.
  2. Preheat a griddle pan or large skillet over medium-high heat; drizzle with a little EVOO. Season the chicken with salt and pepper, add to the pan and cook, turning once, until golden, 12 to 15 minutes. In a microwavable bowl, soften 3 tablespoons butter in the microwave for a few seconds on high. Add half of the cilantro or parsley, the rosemary, the chile powder or paprika and the oregano.
  3. While the chicken cooks, heat a drizzle of EVOO in a saucepan. Add the corn and heat through for a couple of minutes. Add the charred poblano, stir in the milk and chicken stock and bring to a boil. Whisk in the polenta and cook over low heat, stirring, until thickened, 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in the remaining 1 tablespoon butter and the cheese.
  4. Dress the avocado, tomatoes and onion with the remaining cilantro or parsley, the lemon juice and salt.
  5. Slice the hot chicken on the diagonal, then dollop with the spicy butter. Spoon some polenta underneath or alongside the sliced chicken. Serve with the salad.
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