In June of this year, we celebrated our ten year wedding anniversary by going back to my favorite happy place: Ireland. It was the first time since our honeymoon that we were taking a trip purely for pleasure, just the two of us. We rented a car and spent one blissful week sleeping, eating, exploring, enjoying.
Prior to our vacation we had made the decision to mentally unplug from social media. It’s not that we don’t enjoy connecting with others and sharing experiences. We do! But we wanted to make sure we didn’t miss the beauty of what we were actually experiencing together, and sometimes finding the right balance requires taking a step back.
The result was so refreshing that now I need a bit of a nudge to get back out there and start sharing again! So this is me, nudging.
We ate so well in Ireland! Some truly spectacular dishes that I will try my darnedest to get around to sharing later! But when we got back home I was definitely craving some lighter food.
When I was in Montreal a few months ago, my friend Natasha took me to a charming little eatery called Mandy’s. Salad for lunch could sound like an unexciting option, but I was nothing short of delighted by my lunch, and it gave me the idea to incorporate more creative salads into our diet.
I’m not typically into big breakfasts, so on any given day come lunchtime I’m ready for something hearty and satisfying. For this salad, the goal was to get the same satisfaction you would get from a main course, without feeling weighed down. I rummaged through my fridge for a good cast of characters and found a leftover chicken breast (that had been lightly coated in breadcrumbs and pan-seared) leftover from a previous meal and knew immediately this would be the perfect use for it! The bitterness of the frisée with the creaminess of the avocado, the sweetness of the cherry tomatoes and the umami from the goat cheese come together to create a truly satisfying lunch that feels good to eat and tastes great.
Everything used in the salad was remaining from a previous meal, even the dressing itself!
That’s the beauty of a great salad: you can go digging in your fridge and pantry to put together your own signature feel-good salad that’s balanced and good for sharing.
for the salad:
mixed greens like baby spinach, baby beet greens, mâche and arugula
frisée (in equal quantity to the other lettuces combined)
1 breaded and cooked chicken breast, cubed
1/2 an avocado, cubed
a handful of halved cherry tomatoes
grated goat cheese, as much as desired
sprinkling of sunflower seeds
for the vinaigrette:
1 tbsp balsamic glaze
1/2 tbsp red wine vinegar
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
1/2 tsp moutarde de Dijon
3 tablespoons rapeseed oil
Combine ingredients. If making the vinaigrette from scratch, combine balsamic glaze, red wine vinegar, garlic and mustard and slowly whisk in the oil. Reserve half of the mixture for future use.
This salad may be the main course, but it does come with a pretty cocktail on the side! Check in for that simple recipe next!