Warmer, muggier weather has come back to town over the last few days. On nights when the temps are still in the mid-80s at dinnertime, I look forward to something refreshing and light. This salad was just the ticket tonight. With fruit, nuts, chicken, lemon and herbs - every bite packs a slightly different flavor for your mouth to enjoy.
(As an aside, we eat a lot of salads in the ValleyWriter household and one of my favorite kitchen "gadgets" is my salad spinner, which makes cleaning herbs, spinach, lettuce and other leafy greens a snap. If you're in the market for one, don't forget to enter my giveaway for a chance to win a $70 gift certificate to CSN stores. CSN has salad spinners and much, much more!)
Citrusy Grilled Chicken Salad
(Makes 2 main dish servings)
2 chicken breasts
1 Tbsp. oyster sauce
1 tsp. soy sauce
1 tsp. dried thyme
2 tsp. fresh tarragon, roughly chopped
4-5 c. baby spinach
1/2 c. mandarin orange slices
1/4 c. dried cranberries
1/4 c. roasted cashews
1/4 c. lemon juice
1 Tbsp. dijon mustard
1 tsp. lemon pepper seasoning
1/2 clove garlic, very finely minced
1/4 c. olive oil
In a glass bowl, mix together oyster sauce, soy sauce, thyme and tarragon. Add chicken breasts and toss to coat. Marinate in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours. (I leave mine in all day - so about 10 hours.
Grill chicken breasts over medium heat until juices run clear, turning half way through (about 7-8 minutes per side for 1/2-inch thick breasts).
While the chicken is cooking, toss spinach leaves, mandarin orange slices, dried cranberries and cashews.
In a small bowl, whisk together lemon juice, mustaard, lemon pepper seasoning and garlic. Slowly add olive oil, whisking constantly.
Pour dressing over spinach mixture and toss to coat. Divide into two bowls.
When chicken is done, let sit 5 minutes. Then add to salad and serve.