A complex, rich and delicious salad that needs nothing more to make a perfect meal. Impossible to get this one wrong.

New Mexico Chalupa-Style Salad
Recipe type: Salads and Dressings
Serves: 4
  • Salad:
  • 1 Cup dried pinto or pink beans, rinse and drain beans
  • 3 Cups water
  • 1 medium onion; chopped
  • 1 small dried red pepper; crushed
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 Tablespoon lemon juice
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil or salad oil
  • 3 Cups shredded cooked chicken or turkey
  • red leaf lettuce
  • sour cream; for garnish
  • 1 Cup shredded Cheddar cheese
  • tortilla chips and radish roses; for garnish
  • green chile salsa
  • New Mexico Guacamole:
  • 2 soft-ripe avocados; * see note
  • 1 Tablespoon lime juice
  • 1/4 Cup finely chopped red onion
  • 1 small tomato; seeded and chopped
  • 2 Tablespoons chopped cilantro or parsley
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 dash hot pepper sauce
  • 1 dash seasoned pepper
  1. To prepare salad, bring beans and the water to a boil in a 2-quart saucepan; boil briskly for 2 minutes; then remove from heat and let stand, covered, for 1 hour. Add onion, pepper, and 1/2 teaspoon of the salt. Bring to a boil, cover; reduce heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, until beans are tender and liquid is absorbed (about 2 1/2 hours). Let stand until lukewarm. Combine lemon juice, olive oil, and remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt; mix lightly with chicken.
  2. To prepare New Mexico Guacamole, mash with lime juice until mixture is soft but still chunky. Lightly mix in onion, tomato, cilantro, salt, hot-pepper sauce, and pepper.
NOTES: Halve, seed, and peel ripe avocados.

Salad Yield: 4 servings. Guacamole Yield: 2 cups.

To serve, line each of 4 plates generously with red leaf lettuce. Spread a fourth of the beans in center of each plate; cover each portion with 3/4 cup of the chicken mixture, a fourth of the New Mexico Guacamole, a dollop of sour cream, and 1/4 cup of the cheese. Garnish each serving generously with tortilla chips, add a few radish roses, and offer salsa to add to taste.

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