3/4 cup coarsely chopped pecans (about 3 ounces), toasted, for garnish
Whisk together the measured olive oil, lemon zest, lemon juice, pepper, and salt in a large, shallow, nonreactive dish. While whisking, pour in the buttermilk and mix well. Add the chicken breasts and turn to coat in the marinade; cover and refrigerate for 12 to 24 hours.
To make the chicken, heat a grill pan over medium heat and lightly brush it with olive oil. Remove the chicken from the marinade, let any excess drip off, and place the breasts in the grill pan (you may have to do this in batches). Cook until the chicken is golden brown and the juices run clear, about 10 minutes per side.
When the chicken is done, remove it from the heat, top with the salsa and toasted pecans, and serve.
Beverage pairing:Edna Valley Chardonnay Paragon Vineyard, California. Even though purists tend to malign this wine, there’s a time and place for a fruity, generous California Chardonnay. Edna Valley makes a really nice one, with crisp, fine fruit and an underlying minerality. Its notes of peach and citrus will match with the salsa, while the body is just right for the chicken breast.