Add winter greenery to your diet
A diet rich in leafy greens is always a good idea, and a great way to get those beloved veggies onto the dinner table in measurable amounts in winter is with salad.
This simple entree salad goes to bat with arugula, a cruciferous leafy green with a peppery taste that’s super-rich in antioxidants. Shredded rotisserie chicken and canned beans add protein, and a tangy vinaigrette crafted with warm winter spices, honey and lemon juice adds to its bright flavor. Toasted almonds provide a bit of crunch.
It might seem weird to microwave the dressing spices, but it helps bloom their flavor and aroma in a fraction of the time it would take on the stovetop.
The original recipe calls for chickpeas, but I prefer the mild flavor and buttery consistency of butter beans. I couldn’t find fresh figs, so I substituted dried fruit, which is a little sweeter and chewier.
Served with crusty Italian bread and a glass of pale ale, it makes a quick and easy supper.
Winter Chicken Salad
- 6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1/2 teaspoon hot smoked paprika
- Dash of cinnamon
- Juice 1 lemon
- 1 teaspoon honey
- Kosher and freshly ground black pepper
- 5 ounces arugula or spinach, or combination
- 4 cups shredded rotisserie chicken
- 15-ounce can white butter beans, drained and rinsed
- Handful fresh cilantro leaves
- 1 shallot, thinly sliced
- 8 dried figs, quartered
- 1/3 cup honey roasted, slivered almonds
Microwave 1 tablespoon oil, coriander, paprika and a pinch or two of cinnamon in a medium bowl until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Whisk in lemon juice and honey, and season generously with salt and pepper. Whisking constantly, slowly drizzle in remaining 5 tablespoons olive oil until emulsified.
Place salad greens, chicken, butter beans, cilantro, shallot and figs in a large salad bowl and toss to combine. Add about half of the dressing and toss; add more dressing to taste — you want your salad to have a light coating rather than being drenched.
Sprinkle almonds on top and serve.
Serves 4 as an entree.
— Adapted from “The Complete Salad Cookbook” by America’s Test Kitchen