Did you know that a chipotle pepper is actually a smoked jalapeño? You do now. Now that you’ve got your facts straight, make this creamy, smoky, spicy chicken that comes together in one skillet and uses a can (of chipotle) and a carton (of cream) to make pan-sauce magic. Corn salad is the stuff of life, and I will keep making new recipes for it until you tell me stop (but please don’t).
- Two skinless boneless chicken breast halves (1 pound total)
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more for seasoning
- Freshly ground black pepper to taste
- 2 tablespoons canola oil
- ½ cup heavy cream
- 2 tablespoons liquid from a can of chipotles in adobo
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 2 scallions (greens and whites), thinly sliced, greens and whites kept separate
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 (15.25-ounce) can corn, drained
- ½ cup cherry tomatoes, quartered
- ¼ cup cotija cheese, queso fresco, or feta cheese
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro, plus more for garnish
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Season the chicken generously with salt and pepper. Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a 9-or 10-inch nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add the chicken, top side down, and cook, not moving, until both sides are nicely browned, 4 to 5 minutes per side. While the chicken is browning, whisk together all but 1 tablespoon of the cream (you’ll be using it later) with the chipotle and ½ teaspoon of the salt in a bowl. Once the chicken is browned on both sides, pour the chipotle-cream mixture over the chicken, transfer to the oven and bake until the sauce is bubbly and reduced and the chicken is cooked through, 11 to 12 minutes.
While the chicken is baking, heat the remaining tablespoon oil in another skillet over medium heat. Add the garlic, scallion whites, and cumin and cook, stirring, until fragrant, 2 minutes. Add the corn, tomatoes, and remaining ½ teaspoon salt and cook, stirring, until warmed through, 3 to 4 minutes. Cover to keep warm. When the chicken is done, remove it to a cutting board and let it rest for a minute. Stir the reserved 1 tablespoon cream into the pan sauce to loosen it slightly. Slice the chicken and stir the scallion greens and cheese into the corn.
Plate the chicken with the corn salad, and drizzle with the chipotle cream sauce. Garnish with cilantro.