Chipotle Glazed Chicken with Corn and Black Bean Salad

“That which does not kill us makes us stronger.” -Friedrich Neitzsche/Kanye West 

If don’t know what “rock bottom” means, I have provided some visual aids.

Last Wednesday I hit rock bottom. To put this statement in context, it all started when my purse was stolen from a taco stand in Santa Barbara over Columbus Day weekend. The fact that I left it under a table at said taco stand before returning for it fifteen minutes later is irrelevant. I was robbed. Not to be melodramatic, but…MY WHOLE LIFE WAS IN THAT PURSE. Passport, credit cards, bedazzled blackberry, camera, my favorite lip gloss…Thank God I had the presence of mind to keep my Cordon Bleu medal at home that day. After a lengthy interview with TSA, I somehow managed to make it back to New York using a copy of my passport and birth certificate. I then spent the next few days slowly trying to rebuild my lost identity and contact list (which, as you can imagine, is quite extensive). By some stroke of luck, my mother happened to have my driver’s license in her possession.* This was HUGE. Thanks, Mom!

Armed with my driver’s license and a new credit card, I really felt like things were turning around for me. Naturally, I went out to celebrate the change in my luck. Apparently this celebration was slightly premature, since I managed to lose the aforementioned license and credit card over the course of the evening. How did this happen when I am clearly so conscientious and responsible? Your guess is as good as mine.

The following couple days included visits to every government agency in New York City. Obtaining any form of new ID was much trickier than I ever could have anticipated. It turns out that you can’t get a passport without a driver’s license and vice versa. Who would have thunk? Between my quest to regain my identity, a terrifying lack of access to funds, and my struggle to adjust to the iPhone, I was exhausted. Throw in two back-to-back Widespread Panic concerts, and the results weren’t pretty.** I woke up last Wednesday, hungover and discouraged.* I knew from the moment I got out of bed that it was going to be a rough day. Within five minutes, I stubbed my toe, spilled coffee grounds all over the floor, and a carton of milk exploded all over me. When it rains, it pours. Next thing I knew, it was 2pm and I was eating a Hot Pocket in a sweat suit.** Like I said, ROCK BOTTOM.

Proof of sweat suit, bad hair, and milk incident. Hot Pocket not pictured.

Thankfully, I spent very little time in this dark and terrifying place. Mid-Hot Pocket, I thought to myself, “Serena, you are better than this. You are a Cordon Bleu trained chef and you’re eating a microwavable snack food midweek? You should be ashamed of yourself. Get a fucking grip. And for God’s sake, fix your hair.” While totally harsh, that inner voice really couldn’t have been more right. I needed to do something to turn my life around, and FAST. Luckily, I remembered that nothing is guaranteed to lift your spirits more than making a delicious meal and having others compliment you on it. So, I did my hair, put on a less offensive ensemble, and got busy in the kitchen. The result: beachy waves, a classic jeans and t-shirt combo, and chipotle glazed chicken with cilantro lime brown rice and corn and black bean salad. It looked pretty, tasted great, and it only took me an hour. By the time dinner was on the table, “rock bottom” was practically a distant memory.

chipotle-glazed-chicken-with-corn-and-black-bean-salsa
Redemption.

 

Moral of the story: Next time you’re feeling down in the dumps, drop the Hot Pocket and pick up some groceries. Life sucks a lot less when you’re busy being domestic.

Update: My new passport came in the mail on Friday. The very helpful passport photographer said not to smile.

Sassy.

*Apparently somebody had mailed it back to her when I lost it 6 months ago. So lucky!

**I don’t even like Widespread Panic!

*This sometimes happens when you’re “self-employed.”

**Full disclosure: The sweat suit was Ralph Lauren, and it was actually a Lean Pocket, but sometimes a little hyperbole goes a long way.

Chipotle Glazed Chicken: (Serves 4)

Ingredients:
4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
2 tbsp olive oil
1-2 chipotle chilis, finely chopped (depending on how hardcore you are…)
1/3 cup agave nectar
2 tbsp adobo sauce from chipotle can
4 tbsp low sodium chicken stock
½ large onion, finely chopped
Juice of ½ lime
Salt and cayenne pepper to season chicken

 

Preparing your glaze:

-In a large bowl, combine chopped onion, chopped chipotle chilis, adobo sauce, and chicken stock. Mix well.

NOTE: This glaze is incredibly simple and delicious. It takes minutes to make, and it has just the right amount of kick. It also works perfectly with steak or pork if you want to shake things up. Basically, you now have 3 different recipes in your repertoire. Congratulations!

Preparing your chicken:

-Remove any excess fat from your chicken breasts. Season both sides of each breast with salt and a pinch of cayenne pepper. (If you are afraid of cayenne, you can use regular black pepper. Not everyone can handle the heat.)

-Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees.

Cooking your chicken:

-In a large ovenproof skillet, heat two tablespoons of olive oil.  Brown both sides of the chicken breasts (approximately 3-4 minutes on each side).

-Pour the glaze over the chicken and bring it to a boil.

-Put the chicken in the oven at 350 degrees and bake for 10 minutes.*

-Remove the chicken from the pan and keep covered. Bring the glaze to a boil and allow it to reduce until it becomes thick and syrupy (about 3 minutes).

-Add the lime juice and mix.

-Spoon a generous amount of the glaze over each chicken breast and serve.

*(If you do not have an ovenproof skillet, you can pour the chicken into a baking pan. If you do not have a baking pan, a disposable aluminum baking pan will work. If you do not have an aluminum baking pan…go buy one. 2 dollars well spent!)

 

Cilantro Lime Brown Rice: (Serves 4)

cilantro-lime-brown-rice
Easy. Healthy. Awesome.
Ingredients:
Brown rice
Low Sodium chicken stock
Juice of ½ lime
2 tbsp cilantro, finely chopped
Salt to taste

 

Preparing your rice:

-Pour the brown rice into a small pot and add the chicken stock.

-Bring the liquid to a boil. Once boiling, stir the rice once and reduce the heat until the liquid is just simmering.

-Cover the pot with a lid and allow your rice to cook for approximately 50 minutes.

-Remove the rice from the heat and fluff with a fork.

-Add the lime juice and cilantro to the rice. Mix. Add salt to taste.

Corn and Black Bean Salad: (Serves 4)

Ingredients:
2 pieces corn on the cob (or one cup canned corn, if you must)
1 cup black beans (just make your life easier and buy them in a can)
1 tbsp olive oil
½ red onion, chopped
1 avocado, chopped
Juice of ½ lime
Salt and pepper to taste

 

Preparing your salad:

-Cut the corn of the cob into a bowl.

-Heat 1 tbsp of olive oil in a pan over medium heat and add corn. Saute approximately 7 minutes until the corn is cooked through and slightly browned. I like to let my corn get very brown, but you’re in charge.

-Rinse the black beans well, drain, and add to the pan with the corn. Allow them to heat through (approximately three minutes). I do this simply so that the beans don’t retain any of the “can” taste. Add that to your arsenal of sneaky chef tricks.

-Remove the corn and beans from the heat, and place them in a bowl. Let them cool to room temperature.

-Chop the red onion and avocado and add them to the corn and bean mixture.

-Squeeze the lime juice over the ingredients. Mix gently with a fork. Try not to squish the avocados. (This isn’t guacamole, people.)

-Add salt and pepper to taste. Que fiesta!

Chipotle Glazed Chicken

Yield: 4 servings

Ingredients

  • 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1-2 chipotle chilis, finely chopped (depending on how hardcore you are…)
  • 1/3 cup agave nectar
  • 2 tbsp adobo sauce from chipotle can
  • 4 tbsp low sodium chicken stock
  • ½ large onion, finely chopped
  • Juice of ½ lime
  • Salt and cayenne pepper to season chicken

Instructions

  1. In a large bowl, combine chopped onion, chopped chipotle chilis, adobo sauce, and chicken stock. Mix well.
  2. Remove any excess fat from your chicken breasts. Season both sides of each breast with salt and a pinch of cayenne pepper. (If you are afraid of cayenne, you can use regular black pepper. Not everyone can handle the heat.)
  3. Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees.
  4. In a large ovenproof skillet, heat two tablespoons of olive oil. Brown both sides of the chicken breasts (approximately 3-4 minutes on each side).
  5. Pour the glaze over the chicken and bring it to a boil.
  6. Put the chicken in the oven at 350 degrees and bake for 10 minutes.*
  7. Remove the chicken from the pan and keep covered. Bring the glaze to a boil and allow it to reduce until it becomes thick and syrupy (about 3 minutes). Add the lime juice and mix.
  8. Spoon a generous amount of the glaze over each chicken breast and serve.
http://domesticate-me.com/rock-bottom/

Cilantro Lime Brown Rice

Yield: 4 servings

Ingredients

  • Brown rice
  • Low Sodium chicken stock
  • Juice of ½ lime
  • 2 tbsp cilantro, finely chopped
  • Salt to taste

Instructions

  1. Pour the brown rice into a small pot and add the chicken stock.Bring the liquid to a boil. Once boiling, stir the rice once and reduce the heat until the liquid is just simmering. Cover the pot with a lid and allow your rice to cook for approximately 50 minutes.
  2. Remove the rice from the heat and fluff with a fork.
  3. Add the lime juice and cilantro to the rice. Mix. Salt to taste.
http://domesticate-me.com/rock-bottom/

Corn and Black Bean Salad

Yield: 4 servings

Ingredients

  • 2 pieces corn on the cob (or one cup canned corn, if you must)
  • 1 cup black beans (just make your life easier and buy them in a can)
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • ½ red onion, chopped
  • 1 avocado, chopped
  • Juice of ½ lime
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Cut the corn of the cob into a bowl.
  2. Heat 1 tbsp of olive oil in a pan over medium heat and add corn. Saute approximately 7 minutes until the corn is cooked through and slightly browned. I like to let my corn get very brown, but you’re in charge.
  3. Rinse the black beans well, drain, and add to the pan with the corn. Allow them to heat through (approximately three minutes).
  4. Remove the corn and beans from the heat, and place them in a bowl. Let them cool to room temperature.
  5. Chop the red onion and avocado and add them to the corn and bean mixture.
  6. Squeeze the lime juice over the ingredients. Mix gently with a fork. Try not to squish the avocados.
  7. Add salt and pepper to taste.
http://domesticate-me.com/rock-bottom/

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  • Maggie Carter

    I can’t believe no one’s commented about how insanely good this chipotle-glazed chicken is… I’ve made this recipe more times than I can remember. My boyfriend and I like things extra spicy, so I love that it’s easy to adjust the heat depending on who we’re cooking for. We recently moved to the UK and I had a slight panic attack when I couldn’t find chipotle en adobo sauce anywhere, but thankfully I found a “chipotle paste” that’s a surprisingly good substitute. THANK YOU for the epicness that is this recipe.

    • Serena_Wolf

      Maggie! Beyond thrilled to hear that this recipe is such a staple in your rotation. I feel as if the lack of comments could have something to do with this post’s less than stunning photos? I had actually forgotten about this recipe, but your comment has inspired me to resurrect it (and maybe take some new glamour shots). Thank you!!