Saturday, January 05, 2008

Mediterranean Salad with Chicken

This was the most delicious salad this evening! I am on a more cooking resolution this year so you will begin to see a lot more of my own cooking sessions.

This one was inspired from the current issue of Everyday Food. I got a subscription from one of the girls and am beginning to enjoy it very much. This was a simple recipe to make as there was not a lot of cooking involved. I changed it quite a bit though. Here is the way I chose to make the recipe:

First I grilled a couple of boneless chicken breasts. The chicken is not in the recipe, but I thought I'd be able to pull this off as a one dish meal if I added the chicken for the husband. He was quite satisfied with it as a stand alone meal.

While the chicken was grilling with a bit of olive oil and garlic, I opened a can of canellini beans and drained them. I then rinsed them in cold water. Into the salad bowl they went, along with a can of artichoke hearts I had drained as well. On the stove I boiled some water and added cup of whole wheat penne. The recipe called for just regular penne, but we use whole wheat pastas and so that's what went into the salad.

After the pasta was just about cooked I added a quarter cup of sun dried tomatoes to the boil. The recipe called for tomatoes that were not in oil, but again that was all I had so I drained them a bit and added them in. They boiled for an additional minute and then the pasta was drained and placed in a bowl to chill in the fridge.

While the pasta chilled I made the dressing. In a bowl I mixed together 2 tablespoons of olive oil and apple cider vinegar. The recipe called for red wine vinegar, but I had none. Use what you have! It also asked me to add 1 tablespoon of dijon mustard. I am not a fan of dijon mustard. So I added the Zatarains Creole mustard I had on hand. Mmmmm. Stirred it up well and let it rest waiting to put the whole thing together.

Next was shredding or tearing up a head of romaine lettuce. That went in the bowl with the bean and artichokes. I sliced up the chicken into quarter inch thick slices and then cut them to about a 2 inch medallion. Added those in. Added a good half cup of Feta cheese, the dressing and tossed it all together. What is pictured is the result.

It was a hearty salad, fit for a dinner with some crusty sourdough. I would have added a bit more feta and dressing if I were to make it again.

The ingredients were: 2 boneless chicken breasts, 1 can of cannelini beans, I can artichokes in water, 1/4 cup of sun dried tomatoes, 1 head of romaine lettuce, 1 cup of penne, 1/2 cup of feta cheese and the dressing of olive oil, cider vinegar and mustard.