My pre-requisites for a good salad are:
- Different types of lettuce (I use packaged spring mix or baby spinach – it’s quick and you will be much more likely to use it)
- Something crunchy – walnuts, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds
- Something sweet or interesting – pesto, fruit, goat cheese
- Homemade dressing with extra virgin olive oil
Usually I just open my fridge and throw together whatever I find, however last night I adapted a recipe from the Refresh cookbook by Ruth Tal, and it is one of my favourites.
Cali Salad, Fresh-Style
- ¼ cup of extra virgin olive oil
- 2-3 Tbsp of apple cider vinegar (more if you like your dressing acidic)
- 1 tsp pure maple syrup
- Dash of salt and pepper
- ½ tsp of Dijon mustard
Whisk all together in the bottom of a large mixing bowl. (You'll later add the greens to this bowl - saves some dishes)
- 4 cups loosely packed spring mix
- ½ cup cherry tomatoes, cut in half
- 1 chicken breast
- ½ cup white kidney beans
- 1 small jar artichoke hearts, sliced
- ½ cup pecans
- 3-4 Tbsp pure maple syrup
- ½ cup pesto (homemade or store bought)
- 1 avocado, sliced
1) Cook chicken, chop into bite size pieces and coat with half of pesto
2) Put pecans and maple syrup in fry pan on medium heat, stirring occasionally for 5 minutes – careful not to burn them. This makes easy, yummy candied pecans (also tastes great with walnuts).
3) Rinse white kidney beans well under running water, and mix with remaining pesto in a separate bowl. Add more pesto if you're a pesto-lover like me.
4) Now you’re ready to assemble. Put your greens in the mixing bowl with the dressing, and mix it up with tongs. Place on 2 plates, and add toppings. Voila!
Serves 2, or reduce the toppings and serve 4 as pre-dinner salad.
Note: This is usually a vegetarian salad by omitting the chicken, however my protein consumption for the day wasn’t great so I opted to add in a bit of chicken.
Give it a try – guaranteed it will be a favourite of yours!
Recipe adapted from “Refresh” by Ruth Tal
(many other awesome recipes in here I use all the time, too)
- Also check out the restaurant – Fresh