Monday, August 8, 2011

Simply Grilled Chicken with Sweet Cherry & Rice Salad

The creation of this dish started when I peered into my refrigerator and noticed I had leftover grilled chicken and white rice (booooring!) Using some ingredients I had on hand, I knew I wanted to dress up these simple leftovers into something appetizing and refreshing.  The result was a stunning, fresh and colorful chicken salad that was perfect on a hot summer night.  I would have preferred to use brown rice in this dish, but since my husband refuses to eat it, I used white.  No need to worry about pestering leftovers again!

Doesn't look like leftovers to me!
Ingredients for Chicken & Cherry Salad (2 large servings):
2 leftover grilled chicken breasts (or grill chicken on medium high with olive oil, salt and pepper for about 7 minutes per side)
2c arugula
1c fresh cherries, cut in half and pitted
2tsp walnut oil (if you don't have this, use olive oil)
2tsp extra virgin olive oil
1tbs red wine vinegar
2tsp organic blue agave nectar (can use honey/sugar instead)
Salt & pepper to taste

Ingredients for Rice Salad (2 large servings):
2c white rice, cooked and chilled or room temperature
1/2c craisins 
1/2c chopped and toasted walnuts (toast in the oven at 350F for 5-7min or until fragrant)
1/2c shredded carrots
1c arugula
2tbs walnut oil
2tbs red wine vinegar
1-2tbs honey
salt and pepper to taste

1. In a small bowl, whisk oils, vinegar and sweetener.  Taste & add salt and pepper as needed.
2. Toss dressing with arugula and cherries.
3. For rice salad, in a small bowl whisk oil, vinegar, honey and salt and pepper to taste. 
4. Toss rice, craisins, walnuts, carrots and arugula in a large bowl.  Toss with dressing (use just enough to coat: the rice will absorb some of the dressing as it sits)
5. Warm chicken in the oven.  Serve with cherry salad on top and rice salad on the side.  Enjoy!

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