Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Smoky Winter Salad

Smoky winter salad

One of my favorite combinations for a winter salad is apple or pear with nuts (walnuts or pecans) and blue cheese, plus greens. Here I've taken that combo and put a smoky spin on it.

Three ingredients contribute smoky flavor to this winter salad: smoked salt for seasoning the chicken, smoked paprika in the dressing and smoked blue cheese.

Smoky Winter Salad

2 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
12-14 oz. chicken breast cutlets
Generous pinch of smoked sea salt
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
2 tsp. chopped fresh rosemary
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1/4 walnuts, coarsely chopped
4 cups baby arugula leaves
1 pink lady or honey crisp apple, peeled, cored and cubed (may substitute another type of apple or a pear)
2-3 tbsp. crumbled smoked blue cheese (such as Moody Blue or Rogue)

1 tbsp. white balsamic vinegar
1/2 tsp. smoked paprika
1 or 2 tsp. maple syrup (use the real stuff, not maple-flavored corn syrup)
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
2 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil

1. Heat 2 tbsp. olive oil in a medium pan over medium heat. Pat chicken cutlets dry with a paper towel and add to the pan. Season with smoked salt, garlic powder, fresh rosemary and black pepper and cook for about 10 minutes, turning halfway through until lightly browned and cooked through. Set aside to cool a bit then cut into strips.

2. Heat a small frying pan over medium-low heat and toast walnuts until fragrant (be careful they don't burn). Remove from pan to cool before adding to salad.

3. Combine the walnuts, arugula, apple and blue cheese in a large bowl. Whisk together the dressing ingredients, pour over salad and toss to combine. Serve topped with strips of chicken.

1 comment:

  1. Great salad. I'd eat this during any season.