Saturday, August 23, 2008

Dinner Salad

Fall is my absolute favorite season. So, to me, it begins next week during the Labor Day holiday instead of the actual month we have left to go. Since we typically think of salads as a summer dish, i wanted to share this with you while it is still warm outside.

California Pizza Kitchen's Original BBQ Chicken Chopped Salad:

Tortilla Strips:

12 corn tortillas, cut into 1/4-inch wide strips
Vegetable oil


In a deep skillet, heat several inches of oil to 375 degrees. Add tortilla strips to oil, cooking until golden, about 1-2 minutes. Carefully lift them out of the oil with a slotted spoon. Drain and cool on paper towels.

Garden Herb Ranch Dressing:

1/2 teaspoon dried mustard
1/4 teaspoon cold water
2 3/4 cup mayonnaise
1 cup buttermilk
7 tablespoons sour cream
2 1/2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
1/2 tablespoon thinly-sliced scallions
2 teaspoons minced garlic
2 teaspoons minced fresh Italian parsley
1 1/2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon minced fresh dill
1/2 teaspoon minced fresh oregano (or 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano)
1/2 teaspoon ground pepper
1/4 teaspoon minced fresh basil

In a mixing bowl, combine mustard and cold water with fork until a paste forms. Set aside for 10 minutes. Add all remaining ingredients to bowl. Using an electric mixer on low speed, blend all ingredients together. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until ready to use.

Grilled Garlic BBQ Chicken:

1 1/3 tablespoons olive oil
1 1/3 tablespoons minced garlic
2 teaspoons soy sauce
2 teaspoons salt
4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1/4 cup sweet-n-spicy BBQ sauce

Preheat a stovetop grill or broiler. In mixing bowl, stir together olive oil, garlic, soy sauce and salt. Turn chicken breasts in this marinade and marinade at room temperature for 15 minutes. Grill or broil chicken breasts until cooked through, which should take about six minutes per side. Chill thoroughly in fridge. Cut chicken breasts into 3/4-inch cubes. In bowl, toss chicken with BBQ sauce to coat well. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate.


1/2 head iceberg lettuce, cored, rinsed, dried and cut into 1-inch wide strips
1/2 head romaine lettuce leaves, separated, trimmed, rinsed, dried and cut into 1/8-inch wide strips
12 large fresh basil leaves, cut into 1/8-inch wide strips
1 pound jicama, cut into strips
2 cups shredded Monterey Jack cheese
1 cup canned black beans, drained and rinsed
1 cup canned sweet white corn kernels, drained
3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
2 pounds riped fresh tomatoes, cut into 1/2-inch dried pieces
1/2 cup sweet-n-spicy BBQ sauce
1/4 cup thinly-sliced scallions

In large mixing bowl, toss together lettuces, basil, jicama, cheese, black beans, corn, cilantro, dressing and 1/2 of the tortilla strips. Transfer salads to chilled serving plates. Surround each salad with diced tomatoes and remaining tortilla strips. Top each salad with chunks of garlic BBQ chicken and top with BBQ sauce. Garnish with more scallions.

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