Spring Berry-full Salad With Raspberry Balsamic Vinegarette

Drizzle, drizzle, drizzle!

Hey Loves!

So, today was a decently hot day, by Indiana standards anyway, in late spring. I was so busy going through our closet and downsizing, getting rid of old clothes that I never wear, that I didn't have a lot of time and energy to throw together a more in-depth dish. When I started looking through the fridge to try and figure out exactly what I wanted to make, I kept seeing these big, beautiful strawberries. Sitting nearby was the honey goat cheese as well as the gigantic container of spring mixed greens. As I had been planning to do an entree salad, I decided to go ahead and get it done.

Luckily, between pulling out the chicken to let it start thawing and actually starting to cook, my husband came home with a bunch of chicken breasts and a big container of beautiful and juicy red raspberries. Right then I decided to make the raspberry balsamic vinegarette.

So this is my rendition of a popular springtime salad with berries, chicken and so much more! Let's get started!

List of Ingredients:

Salad Base:
Greens - 5 ounces of Mixed Greens, a spring mix is my favorite.
Chicken Breast - 3 Medium Sized Chicken Breasts
Poultry Seasoning - 2 Tablespoon
Olive oil - 1 Teaspoon
Salt to taste

Raspberry Balsamic Vinegarette:
Raspberries - 1/2 Cup
Balsamic Vinegar - 1/4 Cup
Maple Syrup - 1/4 Cup
Extra Virgin Olive Oil - 2 Tbsp
Salt to taste

Raspberry - 1/3 Cup
Strawberry - 7 berries, sliced in quarters
Goat Cheese - 1/3 Cup of crumbled honey goat cheese (Can be skipped to make it a lighter option)
Walnut - 1/4 Cup, Pan Roasted

Okay, so, the first thing you're going to do is get a pan out and start working on the chicken. I tossed three boneless, skinless chicken breasts into the pan with some olive oil over medium-high heat. Go ahead and sprinkle the salt and poultry seasoning. Turn the breasts a few times to get them well browned on all sides, you can prop them up next to each other to get the sides seared off decently. When the breasts have browned on all sides, lay them flat and cover them, turning the heat down to medium. You should check them periodically for the next 8 minutes or so to make sure they are cooking and not burning.

While the chicken is hanging out on the stove, use this time to put together this awesome vinegarette. Get a decent sized bowl out and toss in the 1/2 cup of raspberries. With a fork, you're going to mash up the berries until they are a loose paste. Then pour in the vinegar and maple syrup, whisking the mixture until it's all well incorporated. Check your chicken! Lastly, sprinkle in some salt and start whisking. While whisking, SLOWLY add the olive oil. Continue whisking during this process so the olive oil emulsifies into the vinegarette. When you wrap this up, set it aside and check the chicken. Check to make sure the internal temperature is about 170 degrees. If so, pull it off of the heat.

Go ahead and wash the greens and set them aside to dry for a few minutes. While the greens are drying, grab your walnuts and toss them in a small pan and turn the heat up to about medium to medium-high to get them toasted. Toss them or stir them occasionally to keep them from burning. In between tosses, get started slicing the strawberries. When you are done slicing the berries, the walnuts should be done toasting. The nuts should be golden brown and giving off a lovely nutty aroma.

Remove the nuts from the heat and get ready to throw everything together. Grab your favorite salad bowl or just a large bowl. Toss in the greens, making sure they aren't very wet still. If they are then give them a shake our two over the sink to try and get rid of excess moisture. Then toss in the strawberries, raspberries, goat cheese and walnuts. Remember the chicken? Yeah, go ahead and slice it up however you like and toss it in too. And finally, pour your dressing over the salad and give it a nice toss to get everything decently coated.

And there you have it! A lovely, spring time, entree salad. Between the two of us we couldn't hardly get it finished. But not for lack of trying! I hope you enjoy this recipe and have a great day! Thank you!


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