Easy Chicken Fajitas

For some reason, I feel like all the recipes I have been looking at lately have been for fajitas. I know this isn't actually true, but I have been faced with a great many of them. So, in case I'm not so crazy and you, too, have noticed several enticing fajita recipes out there, I figured I would tack one more onto your list. Now, I made this recipe a long time ago - as in, before I got the wacky idea to actually write detailed notes on the procedure and end result. I have a list of ingredients that I am basing this post on, and not a very intricately described one, either. But we'll go with it, because fajitas aren't really the kind of recipes that need to be rigid, which is exactly what makes them so perfect in my book.

This recipe produces a fresh, creamy wrap full of chicken, veggies, and spices that will make you feel like you're indulging...when you only kind of are. Yes, you could take the recipe I am about to share with you and add guacamole, cheese, and full-fat versions of things like sour cream. And you know what, it would probably be out of this world. I chose to scale this back a little bit, simplifying the ingredient list and trimming down the recipe to make it a little bit less decadent. That's the kind of versatility I'm talking about when I say that fajitas don't need to be rigid, or when I tell you about all of those other Mexican-themed meals I have become so enthralled with lately. They're ideal mid-week slump meals, when you have ingredients on hand and need some help piecing them all together, and yet they're equally nice when you go out of your way to the grocery store to find your inspiration.

Oh, and one more thing - don't forget your napkins for this one. You're gonna need them!

Easy Chicken Fajitas
Yield: 2 servings

The Ingredients*
6-8oz. chicken (approximately 1 large breast)
1/4 - 1/2 onion, sliced into rings and then halved
1/3 - 1/2 large green bell pepper, cut into strips
1 jalapeno pepper, diced (optional, seed for less heat)
2 teaspoons garlic, minced
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon paprika
black pepper, to taste
1/4 cup chopped tomatoes
3 tablespoons salsa
1 1/2 - 2 tablespoons sour cream
olive oil, for sauteeing
pita or tortillas, for serving

The Method
If using raw chicken, place a little bit of oil in a medium-large saucepan over medium heat. Slice the chicken breast into strips and add to the pan, cooking until done all the way through, approximately 6-8 minutes. Remove the chicken from the pan and set aside. If using leftover chicken, simply skip this step.

Add the onions to the pan and, if there isn't much oil left from the chicken, also add a little bit more oil. Saute the onions for 10 minutes, until tender. Add in the pepper, garlic, and spices, reduce the heat to medium-low, and cook vegetable mixture for an additional 10 minutes, or until onions have caramelized.

Optionally, heat a skillet just large enough for the pitas or tortillas or preheat the oven to no more than 300 degrees Fahrenheit, and warm the pitas/tortillas while you finish up the rest of the recipe.

Return the chicken to the pan along with the fresh tomatoes, and allow the new additions to be warmed thoroughly. Stir in the salsa and sour cream, heat gently for 1-2 minutes, and then remove from the heat and finish incorporating. Divide the mixture evenly between two pitas or tortillas, and serve hot.

Notes: *Feel free to adapt this. Other spices and flavorings (chili powder, hot sauce, enchilada sauce), vegetables (corn, guacamole), and toppings (beans, cheddar or monterey jack cheese) would all be fantastic. I even added some spicy, toasted squash seeds I had on hand for a nice, satisfying crunch.

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