Chicken Salad on Beet and Spinach Greens with Maple Glazed Pecans & Pumpkin Seeds

 This salad is filled with color and lots of flavors.
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This light yet filling salad is packed with flavor, starting with rich greens and finishing with a sweet touch of maple-kissed pumpkin seeds and native Texas pecans from thepecanshop.com. You’ll feel like you’ve gone to lunch at a trendy cafe but you don’t have to spend a fortune or leave a tip.

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Simple skillet seared chicken breast is a quick and healthy protein that’s easy enough for anyone to fix.  And the bonus is it only takes minutes to cook.

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These hardy cool-season greens are fresh from the garden or easy to find at your local market.

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This dressing is made of POM wonderful juice and a few staples but is so tasty.

For the Dressing:

  • 1/4 cup POM pomegranate juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt and ground pepper
  • 1/2 cup walnut oil or olive
  • 1 teaspoon dijon mustard

place juice, salt, pepper, oil and mustard into a mason jar and shake until thicken and well blended. Let the dressing chill while you make the rest of the salad.

 

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Young beet greens are delish
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When I make glazed seeds and nuts I like to make a few different of types for snacking on throughout the week.

 

For the Nuts and Seeds:

  • 2 cups pecan
  • 2 cups pumpkin seeds
  • 1/2 cup real maple syrup divided
  • Baking sheet with parchment

Preheat the oven to 325ºf, place a sheet of parchment on the baking sheet set aside. Using 2 separate salad sized bowls place the pecans in one the pumpkin seed in the other.  Add 1/4 cup of maple syrup to each and sprinkle with 1/8 teaspoon sea salt or pink Himalayan salt.  Using a rubber spatula to toss the nuts and seeds. These nuts and seeds will keep in an airtight container for about 2 weeks or can be frozen for about 3 months.

For the Chicken:

  • 2 Chicken boneless skinless chicken breast
  • olive oil
  • salt and pepper

Heat a skillet with 1 tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat. Sprinkle the chicken breast with salt and pepper and place seasoned side down in the skillet.  Cook for 5 minutes sprinkle the unseasoned side of the chicken with salt and pepper and turn over. Cook for another 5 to 7 minutes until cooked through and juices run clear.

Place the chicken on a cutting board and let cool then slice into bite-sized chunks.

 

Greens. Berries, and Apple:

  • 6 Cups mixed cool season greens
  • 1/4 cup dried cranberries
  • 1 Apple cut into bite-sized pieces

Divide the salad greens, chicken, apples and cranberries into 4 salad plates or bowls.  Give each salad a generous sprinkling of seeds and nuts. Top each salad with dressing and serve.

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Mixed Greens Chicken Salad with Candied Pepitas and Pecans

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Since my winter garden is bursting with greens. And because I’m sure everyone will be needing a break from everything turkey and pumpkin about now. I thought I would step outside of the holiday norm and have a salad. This is a big mix but you can use whatever greens you like.

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Fall Salad: Mixed Greens Chicken Salad with Candied  Pecans & Pepitas (pumpkin seeds)

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Ingredients

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For the chicken:

  • 2 boneless skinless breast
  • season with salt and pepper to taste

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For the dressing:

  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 cup white balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 Pomegranate
  • pinch salt and Pepper
  • 1/3 to 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil

For the salad:

  • 8 cups mixed garden greens (baby lettuce, spinach, beet greens and radicchio lettuce) whatever looks good
  • 1 red apple (I used Jazz) 1 granny smith apple, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 1/4 cup dried cranberries
  • sweet and salty roasted maple pecans and pepitas
  • dried cranberries
  • fresh cracked pepper and salt to taste

Instructions

  1. Using a grill panini press or skillet, grill or fry with a little olive oil in a skillet until browned and cooked through. Cut the chicken into bite-sized pieces and set aside.
  2. Make the dressing: Place the mustard, vinegar, pomegranate juice and a pinch of salt and pepper in a small bowl.  Whisk in 1/3 to 1/2 cup of the olive oil. Taste. There should be the balance of sweet and tangy in the dressing, and it will be on the thicken slightly.
  3. In a large bowl, combine the greens. Toss well before adding the chicken, apple cranberries, candied roasted maple pecans & seeds. Serve dressed or dressing on the side.

 

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For the Sweet and Salty Roasted Maple Pecans and Pepitas:

  • 1 cup pecan halves
  • 1 cup raw pepitas (pumpkin seeds)

preheat the oven to 350°F.  Cover a baking sheet with parchment paper set aside.

In a medium bowl place the pecans and 1/4 cup pure maple syrup and 1/4 teaspoon salt and toss to coat the nuts. Spread the pecans on half of the sheet of parchment.

Repeat coating the pepitas in the same way. spread on the other half of parchment. Bake in the oven for 45 minutes tossing the nuts and seeds every 15 minutes. After 45 minutes the maple syrup will have caramelized and turned to a nice candy coating. if it is still a little-wet bake another 10 minutes.

Store leftover nut in an airtight container or zip-lock bag. They will keep for about 2 weeks at room temperature or 3 months if refrigerated or frozen.

 

 

 

Fall Salad: Mixed Greens Chicken Salad with Candied  Pecans & Pepitas (pumpkin seeds)

For the chicken:

  • 2 boneless skinless breast
  • season with salt and pepper to taste

For the dressing:

  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 cup white balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 Pomegranate
  • pinch salt and Pepper
  • 1/3 to 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil

For the salad:

  • 8 cups mixed garden greens (baby lettuce, spinach, beet greens and radishes
  • 1 red apple (I used Jazz) 1 granny smith apple, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 1/4 cup dried cranberries
  • sweet and salty roasted maple pecans and pepitas
  • dried cranberries
  • fresh cracked pepper and salt to taste

Instructions

  1. Using a grill panini press or skillet, grill with a little olive oil in a skillet until browned and cooked through. Cut the chicken into bite-sized pieces and set aside.
  2. Make the dressing: Place the mustard, vinegar, pomegranate juice and a pinch of salt and pepper in a small bowl.  Whisk in 1/3 to 1/2 cup of the olive oil. Taste, should be the balance of sweet and tangy in the dressing, and it will only thicken slightly.
  3. In a large bowl, combine the greens. Toss well before adding the chicken, apples, cranberries, candied roasted maple pecans and seeds. Serve dressed or with dressing on the side.

For the Sweet and Salty Roasted Maple Pecans and Pepitas:

  • 1 cup pecan halves
  • 1 cup raw pepitas (pumpkin seeds)

preheat the oven to 350°F.  Cover a baking sheet with parchment paper set aside.

In a medium bowl place the pecans and 1/4 cup pure maple syrup and 1/4 teaspoon salt and toss to coat the nuts. Spread the pecans on half of the sheet of parchment.

Repeat coating the pepitas in the same way. spread on the other half of parchment. Bake in the oven for 45 minutes tossing the nuts and seeds every 15 minutes. After 45 minutes the maple syrup will have caramelized and turned to a nice candy coating if it is still a little wet bake another 10 minutes.

Store leftover nut in an airtight container or zip-lock bag. They will keep for about 2 weeks at room temperature or 3 months if refrigerated or frozen.

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Enjoy,

go the extra mile, it’s never crowded

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