Wednesday, June 30, 2010

The perfect summer meal

A couple of weeks ago, we had a cookout with some friends of ours. I made this chicken that I had made in the past, but I also found a recipe for a black bean salad to accompany it. I thought the result was a great summer meal that was super tasty and fairly budget friendly. I made this meal for around $2/serving. If you bought factory farmed chicken (I used organic) and used the chicken as a garnish on top of a green salad, then you could significantly reduce the price per serving. Here are the recipes I used:

Cajun Chicken Sandwiches
  • 6 (4 ounce) skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon celery salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon-pepper seasoning
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 6 kaiser rolls, split and toasted
  • 12 slices tomato
  • 6 lettuce leaves


  1. Flatten chicken to 1/2-in. thickness. Brush both sides with oil. Combine the seasonings; rub over both sides of chicken. Arrange in a 13-in. x 9-in. x 2-in. baking dish. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight.
  2. Coat grill rack with nonstick cooking spray before starting the grill. Grill, covered, over medium heat for 3-5 minutes on each side or until chicken juices run clear. Serve on rolls with tomato and lettuce.
Black Bean and Corn Salad
  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon white sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1 (15 ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 (8.75 ounce) can sweet corn, drained


  1. In a small bowl, mix together balsamic vinegar, oil, salt, sugar, black pepper, cumin, and chili powder.
  2. In a medium bowl, stir together black beans and corn. Toss with vinegar and oil dressing, and garnish with cilantro. Cover, and refrigerate overnight.

This dinner would take a little planning because the chicken has to be marinated and the salad should sit overnight for its fullest flavor. It's worth it if you can plan the day before to have this delicious, summery meal. Surprisingly enough, I didn't alter the recipes hardly at all. I used Sucanat in place of the sugar in the black bean salad, but I would venture to say you don't even need that. I used olive oil in place of the vegetable oil and I omitted the cilantro since I didn't have any. It was yummy just the same! Happy cooking! :)

1 comment:

  1. Your corn and black bean salad sounds yummy. I make a similar corn and tomato salad that consists of corn, fresh diced tomatoes, balsamic vinaigrette dressing (, fresh basil, and diced red onion (optional). We love it at our house!!