Prep 30 mins
Cook 30 mins
Based on a Weight Watchers recipe, I've tweaked this to suit my own tastes to create a little more flavor contrast between the polenta and chicken. Though the dish is light, family and guests will never know it. I usually serve this with some black beans and a crispy green salad,
- 1 lb boneless skinless chicken breast
- 2 sprigs fresh cilantro, chopped
- 4 garlic cloves, peeled
- 1⁄2 small yellow onion, chopped
- 1⁄4 teaspoon Mexican oregano or 1⁄4 teaspoon oregano
- 2 -3 cups water
- 3 dried ancho peppers, stems removed and seeds shaken out
- 3 garlic cloves, unpeeled
- 1⁄2 cup canned tomato sauce
- 1⁄2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 3⁄4 cup uncooked cornmeal, to make polenta
- 1 1⁄2-2 cups water
- 1⁄2 cup frozen corn kernels
- 1⁄2 teaspoon Splenda sugar substitute or 1⁄2 teaspoon sugar
- 1⁄4 teaspoon table salt
- 2 medium scallions, sliced (optional)
- 2 sprigs cilantro (optional)
- Place chicken in a large skillet and cover with water; add chopped cilantro, oregano, onion and peeled clove of garlic.
- Cook chicken breasts over medium heat about 10 to 15 minutes; chicken should no longer be pink in center; remove chicken from pan and let cool; reserve liquid.
- Add ancho peppers to the reserved liquid in pan; cover and soak about 10 minutes (no heat on pan); drain liquid into a bowl.
- (Sometimes, I add the whole ancho to the pand and seed after they are softened.) Shred cooled chicken and set aside.
- Place peppers, garlic, tomato sauce and cumin in blender and blend on high until smooth, about 2 minutes; if you have an immersion blender you can add everything to the pan and blend.
- Pour mixture into a saucepan, add chicken and heat through about 3 or 4 minutes; use drained poaching liquid to thin a bit if it seems too dry.
- To make polenta, bring water to a boil; add salt.
- Add about 1/2 cup of the water to the cornmeal to make a paste or slurry; Slowly add cornmeal slurry to the boiling water, stirring until smooth; after 10 minutes add Splenda and corn kernels; cook another 3 to 5 minutes.
- Spoon 1/4 of the cooked polenta onto the serving plate; top with 1/4 of chicken and chili mixture; garnish with additional cilantro (optional) or chopped scallions (optional).
- OR If you prefer polenta wedges, coat a 9 x 9-inch pan with cooking spray and pour polenta into pan; smooth with a spatula; let polenta to firm up, about 3 minutes; cut into quarters and remove from pan.
- Place polenta slices in a large nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray; cook on both sides until crispy, about 2 to 4 minutes per side.
- Place polenta wedge onto the serving plate; top with 1/4 of chicken and chili mixture; garnish with additional cilantro (optional) or chopped scallions (optional).
I recently fell in love with polenta so this recipe was calling out to me! I fried my polenta and topped it with the chicken and served it for lunch today. Big hit to everyone who ate it. I did go light on the peppers since some people I am feeding hate peppers (odd, I know!). Also I added some cheese to the polenta. Made for ZWT 3!
First off I must say that after reading the reviews I altered the polenta. I omitted the Splenda and added 1 tsp of Taco Seasoning - Budget Friendly Seasoning for Tacos, Burritos... By doing this I found the polenta a very good accompaniment for the wonderful chicken. I also used the same Tex Mex Seasoning in the chicken to replace ancho peppers that I can't get here. This made a lovely dinner that is very healthy and tasty. The chicken would aslo make yummy burritos.
Do NOT use an immersion blender!!!! There isn't enough liquid & it will splatter everywhere!! The chicken & sauce is delicious. The polenta is a bit flat. Maybe use 1/2 skim milk? Maybe add a small amount of Monterey Jack cheese? Or both? This went together pretty quickly & had a lot of flavor so it will show up again. Thanks, Toni!