Created for RSC #10. Different, different, and incredibly easy and quick to make! A fresh-flavoured lunch salad with a real taste surprise! This plate of goodies will wow your friends with your originality! Add continental-type breads and chilled Sauvignon Blanc or an unwooded Chardonnay, and you're queen of your castle!
- 4 cooked skinless chicken breasts
- 10 ounces mixed salad greens (a pillow pack, which is about 300g)
- 8 teaspoons capers, drained
- 1 medium red onion, sweet
- 1⁄2 cup pecans (do not break them up)
- 16 grape tomatoes, red-ripe (about 1/2lb or 250 g)
- 20 pieces mozzarella cheese, bite-sized cubes cut from a block (or use the better-quality mozzarella balls, drained)
- coarse black pepper
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1 1⁄2 tablespoons maple syrup (4 teaspoons)
- 2 tablespoons heavy cream
- 1⁄2 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tablespoons cider vinegar or 2 tablespoons wine vinegar
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
- 2 -3 tablespoons fresh basil, very finely chopped
- 1 teaspoon salt, preferably flaky sea salt
- Use any cooked or roasted breasts, but not strongly seasoned ones. I poached mine in chicken broth.
- Make the vinaigrettes first, which will take you only minutes. Can be made the day before.
- Whisk ingredients for Vinaigrette 1 in a mixing bowl, cover, and leave. Can be left at room temperature.
- Whisk the ingredients for Vinaigrette 2 in the same way, but beat a little longer to help sugar dissolve. You could also do this in a blender although the quantity is small.
- To serve:.
- Arrange a small heap of mixed lettuces, torn up if necessary, on each of 4 large plates.
- Cut the chicken breasts in thick slices against the grain, and arrange a cut breast neatly on each heap of lettuce.
- Sprinkle equal quantities (about 2 teaspoons each) of capers over each breast.
- Clean, peel, and then slice the onion thinly. Cut onion rounds again, to form half moons. Arrange some over each chicken portion.
- Arrange the pecans on the salads. (I first roasted them in a hot pan to crisp them).
- Cut each grape tomato in half (if large, not if very small) and prepare the mozzarella. Toss the tomatoes and mozzarella balls (or cubes) in a bowl with enough of Vinaigrette 2 (the basil vinaigrette!).
- Arrange these tossed tomatoes and mozzarella next to, but slightly separate from, the chicken salad.
- Finally, drizzle enough Vinaigrette 1 over the chicken stacks, making sure it penetrates to the lettuce below.
- You will have vinaigrettes left over. Keep it or put in a small jug on the table, but add more of the basil dressing (V. 2) to the cheese and tomatoes on each plate before serving, using a teaspoon to distribute.
- Serve as suggested in intro. Put a little container of flaky sea salt like Maldon on the table, with breads and wine.
- *COOK'S NOTE: I made Vinaigrette no 1 with 2 tablespoons maple syrup, but suggested less syrup here for the average taste. If your maple syrup is the real thing and quite thin, you might want to use my original 2 tablespoons. It is SUPPOSED to be slightly sweet, to contrast with the relative sharpness of the basil one. Use your judgment. It's also an amazing discovery: it does not separate at all, and would be absolutely great with cold roast pork as well.
I made this for lunch yesterday. Great salad, great idea! We loved the two dressings and the two types of salad on one plate. The dressing and ingredients contrasted perfectly and made for a very imaginative, delicious and filling salad. It also took only minutes to put together.We had it with fresh rolls. Thank you, cook!