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Take an ol’ faithful and make it yours, and the name ‘chicken salad’ couldn’t really be vaguer as both contributors joyously come is many shapes and sizes.

IMG_20150522_105414I love salads, especially at this time of year when the right vegetables are in season which means that to find them organic is very easy and not pricey, so you can rest assured that the prospect of having a few leaves with tomatoes and cucumber is well and truly gone. Bulky salads are the best, when flavours and textures combine so that your dish is not only tasty but also packed to the brim with goodness and leaves you full for h-o-u-r-s afterwards is the way it should be. This is one of such salads. Also, this is the casual way in which my local supermarket (which my friend from Florida exclaimed is about the same size as a Super Walmart in the States, who knew they came that big here?!), displays its fruit and vegetables, next to a decorated urn with a steam water feature and stones decorated round it, totally casual.

Ingredients:

– 100g pumpkin seeds
– 1 1/2 tsp honey mustard, the best you can find, with really good honey mustard it tastes fantastic and little goes a very long way. Although I cheated and got mine when I was in Nice along with a couple of jars of lavender honey, I got lucky but you get the picture, just really good honey mustard will do the trick.
– Handful of Oakleaf Lettuce leaves, washed and torn
– 1 salad tomato, finely chopped
– 2 shallots, finely chopped
– 100g cubes of feta
– 200g cucumber
– 200g cooked quinoa
– 2 chicken breasts cut into bite-sized chunks
– 1 lemon
– 1 avocado, chopped
– Freshly ground black pepper

For the dressing:
– 1 tbsp hazelnut vinegar
– 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
– 1/2 tsp honey mustard
– Juice of 1/2 a lemon
– Sea salt
– Freshly ground black pepper

Method:

– Put your chicken in a bowl and dress it with half of the lemon juice, the honey mustard and a few twists of freshly ground black pepper
– Leave it for 5 minutes before gently cooking (no oil needed) until cooked through
– While the chicken is cooking, base your salad leaves the quinoa before layering with the tomato, avocado, cucumber, before sprinkling the chopped shallots.
– Before the chicken is nearly done, in a separate small pan, quickly toast the pumpkin seeds dry as their natural flavour when toasted is delicious
– Equally distribute the chicken, feta and then the pumpkin seeds.

For the dressing:
– In a small bowl, mix together the hazelnut vinegar and lemon juice into the extra virgin olive oil, then whisk in the honey mustard with a fork.
– Twist in the black pepper and a twist of sea salt.

Drizzle over your salad and that is your Sunday lunch sorted, and most of dinner…

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