Garlicky green salad with chicken, parmesan and croutons
Sometimes we need a healthy, quick meal that can be prepared in minutes, that still doesn't lack anything in taste. One of the perfect choices for these times is this beautiful green salad with chicken, Parmesan and croutons.
This is a delicious salad recipe that can be prepared in many different ways. When you have more than 5 minutes available, you can cook the chicken with a little olive oil and one garlic clove in a skillet. This is the best version of the recipe and adds just 5 more minutes in the total cooking time. BUT the good news is: you can also use any cooked (grilled, boiled), shredded chicken or rotisserie chicken. ANY leftover chicken will do:)
The advantages of such a dish are obvious: it's versatile, it's frugal, it's a light and filling meal, it's super healthy and of course it’s very easy to prepare!
The addition of Romaine lettuce, parmesan and croutons will remind you of the classic Caesar salad, but this one has no egg or Worcester. Instead, we use a delicious garlicky balsamic vinaigrette and add some red bell pepper which provides a sweet, fruity flavor in the salad. The veggies are well coated with the dressing and taste amazing!
As with the chicken, the croutons may also be ready-made (or store-bought), but if you have a little time more time available do try to make some fresh ones with any leftover bread you may have. They taste so much better, and it's not difficult to make. See the tips section and be rewarded by their superior flavor for making the effort to prepare them!
Also do consider this recipe if you're having people over. It's perfect for backyard parties and it's a great way to make you kids eat their salad as well:)
- 250gr / 8.8oz / 0.55lb chicken breast
- 170gr / 6oz (4-5 large leaves) Romaine lettuce, chopped
- 200gr / 7oz red bell pepper, seeded and cut in squares (brunoise)
- 1 cup croutons
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 80gr / 2.8oz parmesan, in flakes or grated
For the dressing:
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 60ml (4 tablespoons) extra virgin olive oil
- 15ml (1 tablespoon) balsamic vinegar
- salt, pepper
Cut the chicken breast in half lengthwise (pic.1). Then slice in 1.5cm/0.5in pieces (pic. 2).
In a medium sized bowl pour the olive oil (pic.3), the balsamic vinegar (pic.4), add the minced garlic (pic.5), salt and pepper (pic.6). Whisk until combined (pic.7) and add the lettuce and the pepper (pic.8). Toss to coat.
Add the garlic and a couple of tablespoons of olive oil in a heavy nonstick skillet and put it on medium heat (pic.9). Once the garlic starts to sizzle add the chicken (pic. 10) and cook for 4-5 minutes, stirring often to cook both sides well. Remove and let it rest wrapped in aluminum foil while you assembly the salad.
Add the lettuce-pepper-dressing mixture at the bottom of a large bowl. Garnish with the parmesan and the croutons, and finally add the chicken and serve.
1. You can also grill the chicken breasts for 8-10 minutes instead of cooking in the skillet.
2.To make your own tasty croutons : Add a little olive oil and some minced garlic in a skillet, use medium heat and roast any leftover bread sliced in cubes for about 6 minutes, stirring often until golden brown.
3.You can also try this recipe with roast red peppers (you can also try the ones available in jar) instead of using a fresh red pepper, for a different taste.