It sure has been hot here this past week . . . I think this is what they call the dog days of August. You know what I mean . . . hot and sticky . . . sapping your energy and making you feel lethargic and lazy.
Or at least that is the way it affects me. Thankfully though, it also cools down quite nicely in the evenings, so sleeping is not so bad or uncomfortable. If you've at least had a good night's sleep the muggy days are not so hard to take . . .
But you don't really want to put the oven on, or cook anything heavy . . .
Something light and refreshing is the rule of the day . . . something quick . . . easy . . . but always tasty.
I am a real lover of salads. Todd is not so much, but I always throw in a baked potato for him that I cook in the convection oven, so as not to heat up the kitchen. He's a meat and potatoes man and it's not a main meal for him unless there is a potato involved somewhere along the line.
This tasty salad with a baked potato on the side fits the bill perfectly for him . . . and he doesn't even complain that it's salad. There's cheese here . . . something else that he really likes.
*Herbed Chicken Salad*
Quick to make and low in fat, this is the perfect supper salad for a hot and humid summer's evening. We love eating this with bread sticks, but toasted pita breads go really well also.
For the Chicken:
1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breast meat, cut into 1 inch cubes
1 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp ground black pepper
1/2 tsp salt
1 TBS fresh lemon juice
For the Salad:
8 cups chopped Cos lettuce
1/2 English Cucumber, peeled and cut into cubes
1 small punnet of baby plum tomatoes, cut in halves
a small handful of pitted kalamata olives, halved
2 ounces Feta cheese, crumbled
For the Dressing:
1 cup plain Greek Yoghurt
2 to 3 tsp tahini Isesame seed paste)
1/2 tsp garlic paste
1 to 2 TBS fresh lemon juice (depending on how tart you want the dressing)
salt and black pepper to taste
Mix the oregano, garlic powder, black pepper and salt together for the chicken. Heat a large skillet, which you have sprayed with low fat cooking spray, over medium high heat. Add the chicken pieces and sprinkle with the herb mixture. Saute until the chicken is cooked through and slightly browned. Drizzle with the lemon juice and remove from the heat.
Make the dressing by whisking together all the dressing ingredients. Set aside.
Divide the lettuce amongst 4 chilled salad plates. Divide the olives, tomatoes and cucumber evenly amongst them as well. Scatter 1/4th of the chicken mixture over each. Crumble the feta cheese over all. Place the dressing into a small pouring container, for each person to drizzle over their own salads. Serve immediately.