A Squared: Chicken Avocado & Orange Salad

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Chicken Avocado & Orange Salad

A few weekends ago Alex, Hannah, and I took a Saturday morning walk over to Left Coast Juice & Eatery, a neighborhood juice bar and fast casual restaurant known for fresh cold-pressed juice (obviously) and a healthy California-influenced menu. I ordered the avocado toast and absolutely loved the combination of flavors in this simple dish: creamy avocado, bright juicy oranges, crunchy sunflower seeds, salt ricotta salata, and baby greens drizzled with a simple vinaigrette. It filled me up and gave me so much energy for the day that I couldn't stop thinking about that toast-- and how I could recreate it at home!


Because I don't have the time to whip up an avocado toast like this everyday (maybe I could on a weekend) I really wanted to figure out a way to translate this recipe into something feasible for my busy life-- and a salad that I could pack and bring to work seemed like the perfect way to do that. This salad is super easy to assemble and is full of good-for-you ingredients that will help you power through your afternoon at the office or elsewhere. It starts with a bed of greens of your choice (I love this blend by Taylor Farms that includes shredded kale, carrots, and beets), followed by diced avocado and orange, toasted almonds, and grated Pecorino Romano. You could make this a vegetarian salad if you'd like, but I also added shredded rotisserie chicken here because it helps this salad feel like a complete meal and it works nicely with the rest of these ingredients. A simple homemade red wine vinaigrette is the perfect way to finish this salad off with some tangy acidic brightness.


You could definitely make this salad ahead too! My advice though, would be to cut and separately store the avocado and oranges until you're ready to assemble the day of serving. The oranges could wilt the greens and I like my avocado bright green and not brown, which can happen if it isn't tightly wrapped.


Ingredients:
  • 4 cups mixed greens of your choice *I used this Taylor Farms Kale & Beet mix
  • 2/3 cup cooked shredded chicken *I use leftover grilled or rotisserie chicken here
  • 1 orange, peeled and diced
  • 1/2 avocado, diced
  • 4 Tbs. sliced almonds, toasted
  • 1/4 cup Pecorino Romano, grated
  • 4 Tbs. olive oil
  • 2 1/2 Tbs. red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 Tbs. honey
  • 1/2 Tbs. Dijon mustard
  • Salt and pepper, to taste

Arrange half of the greens evenly in two large salad bowls. Top evenly with chicken, orange, avocado, and almonds. Sprinkle Romano over the top of each.

In a small bowl or cruet, whisk together olive oil and remaining ingredients through salt and pepper. Whisk until fully combined. Drizzle over salads and serve.

This recipe makes enough for two entree salads.

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