Have you ever been to the Caribbean? Not only is the weather wonderful and beaches beautiful, the cuisine is absolutely scrumptious. Tropical climates are conducive to delicious and low-fat meals that make use of the local produce and ingredients. Fruits and vegetables are often combined with smaller amounts of meat and lightly flavored sauces to make main dishes. The hot weather means that the recipes are usually quick to prepare, or at least don’t require hours spent in a hot stuffy kitchen.
Papaya is becoming increasingly popular in North America and is found in smoothies, juices, and increasingly in the fruit section of the produce aisle at the supermarket. This light orange colored soft fruit is high in vitamins A and C, and is soft enough that it can blend easily for desserts, sauces, and even baby food. The papaya, coupled with high-protein, low-fat chicken breasts on a bed of romaine lettuce and a light curry-flavored yogurt sauce makes this dish a tropical delight. Serve with a multi-grain bun for a meal that covers all the major food groups. Chutney can be found in Asian supermarkets or in the foreign food aisle of major supermarkets. Serve with a white wine spritzer, and a light lemon dessert to finish things off.
4 boneless skinless chicken breasts, cubed
1 can unsweetened pineapple rings, drained (keep the juice)
1 tbsp freshly squeezed lime juice
2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
2 tsp dried thyme
1 large papaya, peeled and sliced
1 small head of romain lettuce, washed and torn into bite sized pieces
Curry Yogurt Dressing Ingredients:
1/2 cup finely chopped yellow onion
2 tsp curry powder
1/4 cup non-fat plain yogurt
2 tbsp non-fat mayonnaise
2 tsp Major Grey’s Mango Chutney
Use a large saucepan to combine pineapple juice, lime juice, pepper and thyme with chicken pieces over medium heat. Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for about 15 minutes, or until chicken is no longer pink inside. Remove from heat and let the chicken cool in the liquid for about half an hour.
To make the dressing, use a small non-stick skillet or frying pan and saute the onion in extra-virgin olive oil until it is soft and translucent. Add curry powder and continue cooking, stirring gently. Cool for about 10 minutes. Use a small bowl to combine the yogurt, mayonnaise, onion mixture and chutney. Mix well. Use four plates, and arrange a handful of lettuce on each plate. Spoon chicken cubes onto each lettuce bed, and top with pineapple and papaya slices. Spoon dressing onto side or serve in a small dish.
This recipe makes four servings, with 3 grams of fat per serving, 36 grams of carbs, 28 grams of protein, 307 grams of sodium,and 66 mgs of cholesterol. There are 278 calories per serving.