QF_Chicken pita_pocketsWEB

Chicken Pita Pocket with Tomato and Corn Salsa and Greek Summer Salad

A refreshing roasted chicken pita pocket garnished with a tomato and corn salsa makes a cool dinner for a warm summer evening.

Let the supermarket do the work. Make the fresh salsa using diced tomatoes and onions found in the produce section or at the salad bar and add some defrosted frozen corn.

Or if you’re really pressed for time, use a bottled chunky salsa instead of making the one in the recipe.

For the Greek Salad side dish, doctor up washed, ready-to-eat lettuce with sliced bell peppers and cucumbers from the salad bar. Add oregano to a bottled salad dressing for a Greek flavor and toss olives into the salad.

If you have a few extra minutes use fresh oregano. It has an aromatic and pungent flavor that can add depth to the salad. It is easy to find and worth the effort. If you are using dried oregano, make sure your bottle is less than 6 months old.

SHOPPING LIST: To buy: 1 package frozen corn kernels, 1 container diced tomatoes (1 cup needed), 1 container sliced cucumbers (2 cups needed), 1 container sliced green bell peppers (2 cups needed), 1 container diced onion (2 tablespoons needed), 1 small bunch cilantro, 1 bag washed, ready-to-eat lettuce, 1 jalapeño pepper, 1 lime, 3/4 pound boneless roasted chicken breast, 1 package large whole-wheat pita breads, 1 bottle dried oregano, and 1 container pitted black olives. Staples: reduced-fat vinaigrette dressing, ground cumin, salt and black peppercorns.

Roasted Chicken Pita Pocket with Tomato and Corn Salsa

  • 1 cup frozen corn kernels (see note)
  • 1 cup diced tomatoes
  • 2 tablespoons diced onion
  • 1 tablespoon diced jalapeño pepper
  • 3 tablespoons fresh cilantro
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice
  • 2 large whole-wheat pita breads (see note)
  • 3/4 pound boneless, roasted chicken breast, skin removed, cut into strips

Place corn in a microwave-safe bowl and microwave on high for 2 minutes to defrost.

Mix tomatoes, onion, jalapeño pepper and cilantro with the corn. Add the ground cumin and salt and pepper to taste. Add lime juice and toss well.

Toast pita bread in a toaster oven to warm slightly. Do not let it get too crisp. Cut pita breads in half and open pockets. Spoon half the salsa into the pockets. Add the chicken and finish with the remaining salsa.

Makes 2 servings.

Notes: Fresh corn can be used instead of frozen. Cut the kernels from the ear of corn and microwave on high for 1 minute. Look for large pita bread. I find the whole wheat bread has more texture and flavor than the plain. If you can only find small pitas, use two per serving.

Nutrition information per serving: 475 calories (14% from fat), 7.4 g fat (1.4 g saturated, 1.8 g monounsaturated), 126 mg cholesterol, 48.3 g protein, 58 g carbohydrates, 8.9 g fiber, 374 mg sodium.

Greek Summer Salad

  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano or 2 tablespoons fresh oregano leaves
  • 2 tablespoons reduced-fat vinaigrette dressing
  • 2 cups washed, ready-to-eat lettuce
  • 2 cups peeled and sliced cucumbers
  • 2 cups sliced green bell peppers
  • 10 pitted black olives

Mix oregano and vinaigrette dressing in a medium-size salad bowl. Add the lettuce, cucumber, green pepper and olives. Toss with dressing.

Makes 2 servings.

Nutrition information per serving: 78 calories (44% from fat), 3.8 g fat (0.5 g saturated, 2.1 g monounsaturated), 1 mg cholesterol, 2.4 g protein, 10.8 g carbohydrates, 4.1 g fiber, 173 mg sodium.

Quick Fix is a Tribune News Service column from Linda Gassenheimer. She is the author, most recently, of “The 12-Week Diabetes Cookbook,” “Delicious One-Pot Dishes” and “Quick and Easy Chicken.” Her website is dinnerinminutes.com. Follow her on Twitter @lgassenheimer. Email: linda@dinnerinminutes.com.

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