You know those days when you just cannot be bothered to cook but you don’t want to go out but you also want to eat something nice and not feel guilty about eating it? Sound familiar? Yeah. I get that. A LOT. I feel that most days and trust me while I have some “go-to” foods I would even eat in my sleep, (yeah I also dream about food. Ask the husband) sometimes, when I feel like this I literally just feel like surrendering to a mega bowl of salad. Now – don’t stop reading just because I said ‘salad’. I am NOT one of those people that eat salad to diet. I only eat salads that taste amazing and that make me go mmmmmmmmmm.. This Chicken Caesar salad is one of them.
Salads have a bad reputation of being eaten only when people are desperately trying to lose weight or eat healthy in general. Caesar Salad is.. how can I put it subtly.. well.. it’s not the healthiest of salads but it’s deeeevaaaeen. Divine. Yeah. It’s everything you’d want in a salad – lots of greens, a really thick, creamy dressing and chicken. Croutons for the crunch. I really want to meet someone who hates this salad. I want to eat this all day. Every day. All meals. Before you judge me, just make this Chicken Caesar salad and then you’ll know what I mean.
Chicken Caesar Salad:
Serves 4| Prep time: 15 min | Cook time: 10 min
Iceberg or Romaine Lettuce – 600 gm, washed and dried.
Parmesan – 1/2 cup (or more. There can never be too much parmesan ;))
Salad Dressing –
Mayonnaise – 2 tbsps
Extra Virgin Olive Oil – 2 tsps
Dijon mustard- 3 tsps
Lemon – 2 tbsps, juice of
Salt – to taste
Fresh ground black pepper – 1 tbsp
Worchestershire sauce – 2 tbsps
Anchovies – 2, mashed (this is totally optional. Husband doesn’t like anchovies so much so I didn’t add to this recipe but I highly recommend. I love the subtle fishy and saltiness they add to the dressing)
Olive Oil – 1 tsp
Grilled Chicken –
Chicken breast – 1, boneless
Extra Virgin Olive Oil – 2 tsps
Garlic- 2 cloves, grated
Lemon – 2 tsps, juice of
Lemon zest – 1/2 tsp
Salt & Pepper – to taste
First things first – we start with marinating the chicken. Now this is not your usual overnight marination, it’s really fine if you only keep the chicken marinated for about 10 minutes. In a bowl with your cleaned chicken breast, add the grated garlic, olive oil, lemon juice and zest, salt and pepper. Give it a nice rub and stick it in the fridge for a few minutes.
Preheat the oven to 180C. Cut the bread into bite sized pieces and lay on baking tray with parchment paper. Drizzle some olive oil and bake for about 6 minutes at 200C or until golden brown. Let cool.
To make the dressing – whisk together the mayonnaise, dijon mustard, olive oil, worchestershire sauce, lemon juice and lemon zest. Season with salt and pepper and whisk again. Set to cool in the fridge.
Back to the chicken – in a cast iron skillet, add a little bit of olive oil and place the marinated chicken. Flip after about 2 minutes or once brown and repeat for the other side. Now stick this into a preheated (at 180C) oven at 200C for about 8 minutes. Remember the time required in the oven will vary depending on the type of oven you’re using. Ensure you do not overcook the chicken because then it’s just going to be tight and chewy. Once out of the oven, let it rest for about 5 minutes. Cut the grilled chicken into bite sized pieces and set aside.
Time to get mixing! In a salad mixing bowl, add the lettuce, the grilled chicken, croutons and grated parmesan. Drizzle over the creamy dressing and mix. Serve immediately. **Going to get myself a bowl now**.