Friday, June 14, 2013

Chicken Tacos with Quick Citrus-Pickled Red Onions

I don't think it's any secret by now that I love a good taco, and I especially love them during the summer months. They're such a light and quick dinner option, which makes them perfect for warm weather. Thankfully, Cooking Light has no shortage of taco recipes to choose from, and you know how I love my Cooking Light. In this version, chicken tacos are topped with citrus-pickled onions, creamy avocado, and queso fresco for a meal that is ready in minutes and tastes absolutely amazing.

This was my first time pickling onions, and I was so pleased with the results. The pickled onions were the real star for me. Boiling them for just a moment first takes away their sharp bite, and you're left with a sweet, tangy, still slightly crunchy garnish. The boys even enjoyed them, and I can see myself making the onions on a regular basis so I can use them as a topping for sandwiches and other types of tacos, too.

Chicken Tacos with Quick Citrus-Pickled Red Onions
slightly adapted from Cooking Light, April 2010

Juice of 1 orange
Juice of 2 limes
1 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 medium red onion, thinly sliced

1 pound chicken breast tenders
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon ground cumin
3/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon freshly-ground black pepper
Cooking spray

Flour tortillas
1 avocado, pittled and sliced
1 tomato, seeded and diced
Crumbled queso fresco cheese
Sour cream

1. Combine first 4 ingredients in a medium bowl, stirring until sugar dissolves. Place onion in a small saucepan; cover with water. Bring to a boil; drain and plunge onion in ice water. Drain onion; add to juice mixture. Chill until ready to serve.

2. Heat a large cast-iron skillet over high heat. Sprinkle chicken with oregano, cumin, salt, and pepper; toss to coat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add chicken to pan; cook 4 minutes or until browned and done, stirring occasionally. Shred or chop chicken into bite-size pieces.

3. Heat tortillas according to package directions. Divide chicken evenly among tortillas. Drain onion; divide evenly among tortillas. Top each tortilla with sliced avocado, diced tomatoes, queso fresco, and sour cream.

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