A hearty salad worthy of a cowboy appetite.
By Ingrid Schulz
Photos By Krista Kay Photography
Whoever said dates and goat cheese couldn’t be manly clearly hasn’t dived into this creation. At first glance, it may seem an odd mix, but trust us, this is one salad that delivers a complicated and delicious layering of taste. The cornbread croutons lend a southwestern flavor the dates add a touch of sweetness and the goat cheese, a generous tangy zip. Throw in your chicken, toss is all in the light oregano and garlic flavored homemade dressing and you’ve got a salad meal packed with protein and high on flavor.
This salad is especially great for those early still summer warm evenings, when the last thing you want on your chore list is hanging around the kitchen fixing supper. Certainly not when there might be summer’s last light and warmth to enjoy or horses to ride. You can make it all ahead and simply pull it out of the fridge and assemble a few minutes before serving.
Use the leftovers of your Sunday dinner roasted farm-raised chicken if you like, but a store-bought rotisserie chicken works just as well. Similarly, bake your own cornbread, or as a quicker alternative, buy a cornbread loaf or muffins at your local bakery. Cut the bread into bite size pieces, brush it lightly in corn oil, salt and pepper them, and toast in a 400F oven for five to ten minutes.
Simply add as little or as much of each of the ingredients below in a salad bowl amply filled with a bunch of fresh greens – preferably a mix of romaine and spring greens.
Sliced chicken meat
Chopped tomatoes or grape or cherry tomatoes halved
Corn, either off the cob, or canned
Chunks of goat cheese
Sliced, and if preferred, toasted almonds
Salt and pepper
2 tbsp spicy brown mustard
1/4 cup lemon juice
1-2 tsp apple cider vinegar
1-2 tsp brown sugar
1-2 cloves minced fresh garlic
1/4 tsp dried basil
1/3 tsp dried oregano
1 cup good quality extra virgin olive oil
Mix together all the ingredients.