Remember Wednesday when I posted the recipe for Sun-Dried Tomato Vinaigrette? I told you there would be a recipe coming Friday that would show you what I put it on. Grilled Vegetable Chicken Salad with Sun-Dried Tomato Vinaigrette my friends. Almost too much tastiness for one bowl to contain.
The story of how I put the salad together is not my most organized.
- Rummaging through the fridge for random veggies
- Getting excited at the last minute because I could finally use that package of israeli couscous that’s been sitting in the cupboard
- Having an internal battle about whether the veggies should be grilled…no roasted! GRILLED! no roasted. Grilled?
- Carefully arranging all the ingredients atop the baby greens only to realize that I’d nearly covered them up entirely. I promise there’s some real lettuce underneath all the goodness you see.
Despite my half baked methods, the salad ended up being a perfect platform for
Sun-Dried Tomato Vinaigrette <———- the tastiest dressing in existence.
I threw in some pine nuts and goat cheese for creaminess, and oh boy, if you get a bite that’s equal parts goat cheese and vinaigrette, it’s going to be a explosion of flavor in your mouth.
Did you see Ratatouille? Remember when he’s eating the mushroom and cheese and herbs all at the same time, and there are fireworks going off in the taste center of his little rat brain? It’s like that. Fireworks for your taste buds!
Also, have you tried israeli couscous???
If you haven’t, it’s time. It’s like the Dip N’ Dots of pasta. Perfectly round and slightly chewy, israeli couscous is my number one grain to eat right now. Usually, the package instructions tell you to toast the pearls before simmering them, so they have a delightfully nutty flavor! And israeli couscous counts as a whole grain, so we are basically winning all around.
Honestly, there were a couple of days when I just ate leftover couscous and tomato vinaigrette together on their own for lunch. DE-LI-SHUS.
When I first started cooking, I had a lot of mishaps with grill pans and trying to grill. The best way to assure that you have nice grill lines and that the food doesn’t stick, is to make sure it is fully cooked (on the side touching the grill) before you flip it. If you try to flip half-cooked food, it will stick badly, and if you move the food around before it’s done on one side, it’ll make weird criss cross grill lines, which nobody wants to deal with.
Also there are 3 ways (that I’ve tried) to apply the oil:
- Pour it on the grill
- Brush it on the grill
- Brush it on the food.
I definitely prefer to brush it on the grill. When I pour it, the oil tends to pool between the raised grill lines and the food sticks.
When I brush it on the food, there’s too much oil, and it tastes a bit greasy.
So, brushing it on the grill (focusing on the raised parts) is the perfect happy medium in my opinion. Your food doesn’t stick badly, but it also doesn’t get loaded down with oil.
So now you have no excuses not to make Sun-Dried Tomato Vinaigrette, since you have this tasty salad to put it on 🙂
Thanks for reading!
- 1 cup israeli couscous, cooked according to the packages cooking instructions
- ½ cup pine nuts
- 2 oz goat cheese
- 1 red pepper, sliced into ½" strips
- 1 zucchini, sliced diagonally into thin pieces.
- ½ - 1lb chicken breast tenders
- 3 cups mixed baby greens
- ½ cup tomato vinaigrette
- 2 tbl vegetable oil
- Cook couscous according to package instructions.
- Heat a grill pan over medium/high heat, and brush with one tablespoon vegetable oil
- place chicken tenders on grill and cook on one side about 5 minutes, then flip and cook on the other side about 2 minutes. Chicken tenders are fully cooked with a thermometer inserted in the thickest part reads 165 degrees. Set tenders aside, and cover with foil to keep them warm.
- Brush grill with remaining tablespoon of vegetable oil and heat over medium/high heat again. Add veggies to grill and cook on both sides for around 5 minutes, or until slightly softened with nice grill marks.
- In a large salad bowl add greens and all other ingredients. Serve while chicken and veggies are still warm.