California Salmon or Chicken Salad


Here are the recipes for today’s “Chef’s Table” lunch from work. Today I featured a California Grill Salmon Salad with Pear-Infused Balsamic Vinaigrette. This salad can be made with either salmon fillets or boneless-skinless chicken breasts by following the same recipe and substituting the protein of your choice. The salad composition is up to your liking. The recipe below lists the way I prepared it today with alternate suggestions in parenthesis.

First, make your dressing. To make the dressing you need either a food processor fitted with standard blade or a blender.

Pear-Infused Balsamic Vinaigrette

  • 2 cloves of garlic, peeled
  • 1 can pear halves in heavy syrup
  • 3/4 cup white balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 cup EV olive oil
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp black or white pepper
Put the canned pears and their syrup in the food processor or blender and puree. With the machine continuously running, add the garlic, salt and pepper, then add the vinegar. Pour the oil in a steady stream into the running machine. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
Maple-Glazed Salmon or Chicken
  • 3 tbsp maple syrup (or you can substitute 2 tbsp dark brown sugar)
  • 2 tbsp low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp minced or grated fresh ginger root
  • 1 tbsp fresh squeezed orange juice
Combine ingredients and pour over your choice of boneless chicken breast or salmon fillets and marinate for at least 1 hour. For salmon, bake in 325F oven for 15 minutes. For chicken, cook until internal temp reaches 165F either in the oven, saute pan or on the grill.
California Salad 
  • Spring mix lettuce
  • Diced red bell pepper
  • Shredded carrots
  • Sliced red onion
  • Dried cranberries (or fresh blueberries)
  • Sliced fresh strawberries (or canned Mandarin oranges)
  • Crumbled Bleu cheese (or goat cheese or Feta)
  • Candied coated Walnuts (or pecans, almonds)
  • Maple glazed salmon (or chicken)
  • Pear-infused balsamic vinaigrette
In a large salad bowl, add enough spring mix for total number of salads you would like to serve. Add to the lettuce the red bell pepper, carrots and onion. Pour 2 tbsp vinaigrette over the salad mixture and mix well to coat. Put coated salad greens in your serving bowl. Sprinkle with a handful of dried cranberries (or fresh blueberries), then arrange some sliced strawberries on the salad. Sprinkle liberally with bleu cheese crumbles, then a few candy-coated nuts and finally top the bed of salad with either maple glazed salmon fillet or a grilled breast cut into strips. Drizzle a little more vinaigrette over the protein and serve. Garnish with some thinly sliced green pears if available.
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