Thursday, July 28, 2011
Berry Chicken Salad with Berry Poppyseed Vinaigrette
I love it when summer rolls around because I get to eat lots of salad! I didn't used to be much of a salad eater. I thought salads were rather boring, although I did eat them when they were offered but mostly because I knew they were good for you and that's what I should do.
Last summer I discovered the beauty and diversity of salads; how flavorful and colorful they can be as well. I ate lots of salad and I didn't get bored with it. I fell in love with this Asian Slaw with this Ginger Lime dressing and ate it a ton.
This year I have found a few more gems and this Berry Chicken Salad is one of them. Apparently it's similar to a more commercially made one but I rarely eat out and when I do, it's not fast food. So, I wouldn't have been the wiser. I love that the berries in this salad are so deep and bright in color that it just makes the salad pop! They lend the sweetness, then the soft feta gives it that salty contrast. This would have been the perfect July 4th salad because it's red, white and blue. Come to think of it, I think I may have actually eaten this salad on July 4th. I ate it for the first time at a family reunion that weekend and when I came home I just had to have more!
Berry Chicken Salad
1/2 head Romaine lettuce, washed and shredded
6-8 oz. baby spinach
2 chicken breasts, well-seasoned to your liking, grilled and either thinly sliced or chopped into bite-sized pieces
8 oz. strawberries, rinsed and sliced
8 oz. blueberries, rinsed
4 oz. crumbled Feta or shredded fresh Parmesan cheese (or both!)
1 c. sliced almonds
Berry Poppy Seed Dressing to taste
For serving a large crowd, toss all the salad ingredients in a large serving bowl and add dressing to taste. For individual servings, arrange ingredients on plates and serve the dressing on the side. Makes about 8 side dish servings and 4 main dish servings.
Berry Poppy Seed Vinaigrette
1/2 c. white wine vinegar
1/2 c. honey (or sugar)
1-2 cloves garlic
1 tablespoon grated onion
1 tsp. kosher or other coarse salt
About 10 cracks of freshly ground black pepper
1 c. raspberries, blackberries, or strawberries
2/3 c. oil
1 1/2 tsp. poppy seeds
Combine the vinegar, honey, garlic, onion, salt, pepper, and berries in the jar of a blender. Blend until smooth and then, with the blender running, add the oil in a steady stream. Turn off the blender and whisk in the poppy seeds. If possible, refrigerate for at least an hour before serving.
This dressing will last in your fridge about as long as the berries they are made with. So, if you want a good indicator, leave a berry or two in the fridge and about the time it starts wilting, you know your dressing is about done.
SOURCE: Our Best Bites
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