Welcome to the second installment of The Salad Bar--a monthly blogging event hosted by Wendy of The Weekend Gourmet . This month the theme is Potluck Salads. Oh my...salad for a crowd! I just haven't been making large batches of food recently, so I searched around for a recipe that I remembered from my past that I could reduce down for just my husband and me. Yes--I found it!
The original recipe that I was thinking of comes from a benefit cookbook put out by the Mount Sinai Auxiliary of Minneapolis called Food for Show Food on the Go! It is a huge batch of salad called Fantastic Chicken Salad. To make it more manageable (and to utilize what I had on hand) I changed it considerably. I will call my new version Grilled Chicken Salad for a Crowd. Go ahead and double this if you are really making it for a crowd--I made it just for us and had enough for several additional meals.
Grilled Chicken Salad for a Crowd
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
salt and pepper
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
2 tablespoons orange juice
1/2 (8 oz) bag baby spinach leaves
1/2 (8 oz) bag Spring Mix lettuce
2 hard boiled eggs, sliced
4 plum tomatoes, quartered
1 avocado, sliced
1 cup roasted corn kernels
1 cup shredded Swiss cheese
1 cup mayonnaise (light is ok)
1/4 cup chili sauce
2 tablespoons grated onion
2 tablespoons pickle relish
1/4 teaspoon chili powder
Butterfly the chicken breasts, place them between two sheets of parchment paper, and pound them thin. They will grill up fast and won't dry out.
Start by grilling or baking the chicken breasts. I was able to do this ahead of time by just adding the chicken (pounded thin) to the grill when I was cooking dinner the night before. Season the chicken with a little salt and pepper before cooking.
In a medium bowl, blend the oil, vinegar, and orange juice. Cut the grilled chicken into large chunks and stir them into the citrus mixture. Cover, refrigerate, and marinate for several hours.
I love the orange-y taste the marinade gives the chicken...
The addition of the chicken makes this truly meal worthy.
Anyone have one of these? I use my egg slicer way more often than I ever thought I would.
I always throw a few ears of corn on the grill to give them a little char. Then, I cut the kernels off and use them for salads.
While the chicken is marinating, go ahead and make the salad dressing. It's so easy to make it yourself, no? Just blend the mayonnaise, chili sauce, onion, and chili powder together and refrigerate until you need it.
Just like Thousand Island Dressing--I use this as a "secret sauce" for my burgers, too!
When you are ready to assemble the salad, have all of your ingredients at the ready. Then, simply layer the ingredients in a large, glass or clear bowl. Start with half of the lettuce and spinach, then add the chicken chunks, eggs, tomatoes, avocados, corn, and more lettuce. Top with the shredded cheese and refrigerate. When you are ready to serve, toss all of the ingredients together and pass the dressing. Alternately, toss the salad with the dressing and let the guests serve themselves.
Feel free to add additional ingredients. The original recipe had water chestnuts, bean sprouts, and black olives. A little red onion sounds good, too!
I prefer to add my salad dressing to individual servings...this made a nice meal for Pete and me.
Take a look at all the Potluck Salads!