I make this meal-in-one salad often at home. Vary the vegetables according to the season and substitute other cooked meats or seafood for the chicken. Serve it with vegetarian wraps or flour tortillas.
6 cups baby salad greens
3 to 3 ½ cups cooked chicken meat, weighing about 1 ½ pounds
3 cups frozen, defrosted, and blanched corn or cooked, fresh shucked from 4 ears
1 pound or 2 ½ cups cherry tomatoes, cut in half
1 15-ounce can pink, pinto, or black beans, blanched briefly in boiling water, and refreshed in cold water, and drained
2 ripe, but firm avocados, peeled, pitted, and cut into ¼-inch cubes
2 cups good-quality store bought salsa (or homemade see below)
¼ cup chopped, fresh cilantro leaves
*Spicy Homemade Salsa:
1 ½ jalapeno pepper ends trimmed and seeds removed
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 cup minced scallion greens
1 pound vine- ripened tomatoes, rinsed and drained
4 tablespoons freshly-squeezed lemon juice, (about 1 lemon)
1 teaspoon salt or more to taste
½ cup chopped, fresh cilantro leaves
1. Prepare all the ingredients as directed. Arrange the greens in the bottom of a large serving bowl. Arrange the corn, cherry tomatoes, beans in separate concentric circles, with the cut chicken in the center. Arrange the avocados pieces on top.
2. Pour the store-bought salsa into a serving bowl. Mix in 2 tablespoons of the chopped, fresh cilantro. If preparing the homemade salsa, see recipe below. Sprinkle the remaining chopped cilantro on top. Serve.
* To prepare the homemade salsa, drop the jalapeno peppers and garlic down the feed tube of a food processor fitted with a steel blade while the machine is running, or into a blender, and chop finely. Add the scallion greens and pulse to mix. Add the tomatoes and pulse until coarsely chopped. Stir in the lemon juice, cilantro, and salt. Pour into a serving bowl and let stand for 30 minutes at room temperature, then refrigerate until ready to serve.
© Copyright Nina Simonds 2009