Weeknight quickie

I rolled in the door Wednesday night barely able to keep my eyes open, but desperate for food that doesn’t make me feel like crap. Sound familiar?

No sympathy is required – this is completely self-inflicted. Over the past seven days, we (admittedly, mostly I) decided to paint the kitchen, living room and dining room, empty out closets, entertain friends, replace a broken refrigerator and oh yeah, start a new job. No sweat!

But long hours, a demoed kitchen and a solid commute mean that menus in the Hot Dish Kitchen have pretty much gone to hell. So tonight, it was time for a change.

While neither one of us had the energy to put into something fussy, we pulled together a quick, delicious and heart-friendly meal, with enough leftovers to keep me out of the fast food lineups tomorrow. Check the veggie drawer of your fridge, and get started.

Spicy tequila chicken and chunky vegetables

Step 1: Make a quick marinade

tequila chicken verticleEvery great dish starts with an awesome rub or marinade. With a mortar and pestle, combine:

  • 1 tsp. pepper corns
  • 1 tbsp. ancho chili
  • ½ tsp. cayenne pepper
  • ½ tsp. coriander
  • ½ tsp. cumin
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. parsley
  • 1 tbsp. fresh, chopped garlic

Grind to powdery consistency, then add:

  • 1 tbsp. fresh, chopped garlic
  • 1 ½ tbsp. tomato paste
  • ½ cup tequila
  • ¼ cup lime juice or orange juice

Reserve ¼ cup mixture. Pour remaining mixture into a freezer bag, add fresh, boneless chicken breasts or thighs, seal bag and shake to coat thoroughly.

Prepare the vegetables

Wash, peel (if necessary) and chop a selection of your favourite vegetables into approximately 1-inch chunks. Recommended:

  • Grape or cherry tomatoes
  • Avocado
  • Zucchini
  • Onion
  • Red pepper

Toss vegetables with reserved marinade.

In a large skillet, heat 2 tbsp. olive oil on high. Remove chicken from marinade and sear on both sides (approx. 2 minutes per side, depending on thickness.)

Add vegetables and continue cooking until vegetables are slightly softened/browned and chicken is cooked through.

Serve as is, or add crushed tortilla chips and/or shredded cheese as a garnish.


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