Paul was born in Miami. Chicken Kitchen? Also a Miami native. So, naturally, they were a match made in heaven & the affair was hot and... um... chicken-y?
As Florida kids stuck in North Carolina, we love re-creating our favorite sunshine state eats at home. This particular recreation was long overdue. In fact, after watching P inhale a Chicken Kitchen To-Go box during our last FL road trip, I knew I had to start making it at home. I promised him the second we got back to NC I would not only recreate this dish, but perfect it =)
You should have seen his face light up when I told him what we were making. =) I put him on chicken duty since I wouldn't know how to cook meat if it jumped on the grill and asked to be rotated. I do, however, know my way around veggies and promptly got to work on those.
Chicken Kitchen Mexican Chop Chop™
[for two]What's in it?
2 cups Mahatma yellow saffron rice, cooked
2 boneless skinless chicken breasts, grilled
1 diced tomato or two handfuls of halved cherry tomatoes
1 cup (or more!) of mushrooms or any other veggies you have on hand
1-2 cups chopped lettuce
1-2 cups black beans, drained and rinsed
2-3oz grated cheddar, chipotle cheddar, or mexican cheeses
P seasoned his chicken with poultry seasoning, freshly ground black pepper, and onion powder and tossed on the grill. For extra flavor and nutrients, add turmeric and garlic powder to the spice rub.
Creamy Curry Vinaigrette
3 Tbsp fresh or store bought mayo [or yogurt!]
1/2 tsp of curry powder, plus more to taste
1/2 tsp of white vinegar
a pinch of mustard powder + garlic powder
S+P to taste
Crazy about the sauce? Double it and pour it on everrrrything! <3
vegansarus chop chop add baked/fried tofu, guacamole, & veganize the the sauce
brontosaurus chop chop tofu it up or add sauteed veggies & extra black beans
t-rex chop chop take a cue from Paul & add grilled, seasoned chicken to the mix
Get Chop Chop-in'!
If the restaurant can prep this baby at fast-foodie-like speeds then gosh darn it we can too! The two things that take the longest (the rice and the chicken) can be prepped ahead of time if you love this dish and want to sneak it into weekly rotation (*cough*paul*cough*) and travels super well for work/school lunches. Rambling! So on to the cooking instructions!
Cook your yellow rice via your usual method. While it's cooking, decide what you want your protein to be. If you're going the tofu route, here's a recipe. For chicken, simply rub it with your favorite spices and toss it on the grill! Garlic powder, onion powder, turmeric, salt/pepper and poultry blends make an amazing combo. For hot delish veggies we tossed the black beans and mushrooms in a foil packet with a splash of olive oil and popped it on the grill for a few minutes! Foil packets are so freaking money... I always forget to make them but when I do, angels sing a little. They do! They sing "no mess! no clean-up!" and I shed a tear. You've made them before for veggies, right? They're awesome on the grill or in the oven. Let me know if you want me to do a foil pack-a-palooza post.
Ohmygosh this is the post of many rambles! Long story short, cook rice, cook protein, chop veggies, grate cheese and.... toss it all together! Pile the black beans on top of your sunny, colorful rice and pile on the veggies!
For the sauce, whisk together mayo, vinegar and spices and serve room temperature. You can dip your fork in it and then dig in to your chop chop or go ahead and drizzle it all over the place. Its divine!
Hmmmm.... so which one was better?
|it feels oh so wrong to say "Duh! Winning!" But.... Yeah.|
I can't say it enough, this ROCKED! Plus it totally tastes 101x better than the Chicken Kitchen inspiration dish since I was able to make it with my own personal favorite ingredients. I like to follow the dirty dozen when possible so I used organic tomatoes and lettuce and fancy chipotle cheddar cheese... insanely delicious! Something about the warm fluffy rice and beans paired with the crisp and refreshing veggies is just magical. And the sauce? *Swoon!* Feel free to top this with guacamole and greek yogurt if you'd like -- but i'm tellin' ya -- the curry sauce is ridiiiiiculously delicious!
Check out this recipe for a rockin' Salmon Chop Chop <3