Romaine Salad with Chicken, Apricots & Mint
This bright and summery entree salad, which uses a savory apricot puree as both marinade and dressing, makes a refreshing change from the standby Chicken Caesar. The salad also works well with sliced peaches or nectarines.
Yield: 4 servings, 2 1/2 cups each
Active Time: 30
Total Time: 40
Marinade & dressing
- 1/2 cup dried apricots
- 1 cup hot water
- 2 cups loosely packed mint leaves, (about 1 bunch)
- 1 teaspoon freshly grated orange zest
- 1/2 cup orange juice
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 4 teaspoons Dijon mustard
- 4 teaspoons red-wine vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste
- Freshly ground pepper, to taste
- 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breast, trimmed of fat
- 1 large head romaine lettuce, torn into bite-size pieces (10 cups)
- 6 fresh apricots, or plums, pitted and cut into wedges
- 1 cup loosely packed mint leaves, (about 1/2 bunch), roughly chopped
- 1/2 cup sliced almonds, toasted (see Tip)
- Preheat grill.
- To prepare marinade & dressing: Soak dried apricots in hot water for 10 minutes. Drain and transfer apricots to a food processor. Add 2 cups mint, orange zest, orange juice, honey, mustard, vinegar, salt and pepper. Process until smooth. With the motor running, gradually drizzle in oil. Reserve 1 cup for the dressing.
- To prepare salad: Transfer the remaining marinade to a large sealable plastic bag. Add chicken, seal and turn to coat. Marinate in the refrigerator for 20 minutes.
- Lightly oil the grill rack (hold a piece of oil-soaked paper towel with tongs and rub it over the grate). Grill the chicken over medium-high heat until no longer pink in the center, 6 to 8 minutes per side. (Discard the marinade.)
- Meanwhile, combine lettuce, apricot (or plum) wedges and chopped mint in a large bowl. Add the reserved dressing and toss to coat. Divide the salad among 4 plates. Slice the chicken and arrange over the salads. Sprinkle with almonds and serve.
Tips & Notes
- Make Ahead Tip: The dressing will keep, covered, in the refrigerator for up to 2 days.
- Tip: To toast almonds: Spread on a baking sheet and bake at 350°F until golden brown and fragrant, 5 to 7 minutes. Toasted almonds will keep, tightly covered, at room temperature for up to 1 week.
Nutrition Bonus: Vitamin A (230% daily value), Vitamin C (110% dv), Fiber (41% dv).
2 Carbohydrate Serving
Exchanges: 1 fruit, 3 vegetable, 4 lean meat, 1fat (mono)