Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Summer Salads

There's nothing better for dinner on a warm Summer evening than a fresh, cool salad. :) Soups & casseroles have their place no doubt, but a salad made from some of Summer's freshest picks? I'd call that gratitude at it's best. 

This week we've practically lived on salad. Just this week I've made:

*Whole wheat pasta salad with olives, feta & fresh spinach
*Baby red skin potato salad
*Waldorf fruit salad with walnuts
*Romaine salad with grilled red peppers & red onion
*Chicken Fiesta salad

Today I thought I'd share the Chicken Fiesta Salad recipe. It's really delicious and sooo easy to prepare too. Matthew and I ate it in two days it was that good, and we usually take three or four days to eat up something in this house when I make a big bowl of it. Not this time! Ha!

My mother made us this salad the week after I gave birth to Cole. I wasn't about to step into a kitchen and start cooking cause I had a longer-than-normal recovery period (at least it felt like forever) and wasn't feeling the greatest (hormones didn't help either!). My mother was an Angel from Heaven who stepped in and took care of everything for us. Thank you, Mom! Making this recipe brought back sweet memories of that week spending time with our newborn baby Cole, moments with Matthew, and sweet conversations with Mom. {I cannot believe 9 months have already passed!!! Time flies!}

~Chicken Fiesta Salad~
{adapted from Better Homes & Gardens cookbook}

4 cups torn romaine lettuce
1/2 cup shredded Monterrey Jack cheese
1 8-ounce can red kidney beans, rinsed & drained, or
1/2 of a 15-ounce can garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained
1 1/2 cups chopped cooked chicken or turkey (I used 
a rotisserie chicken)
2 small tomatoes, cut into thin wedges (or cherry tomatoes
cut in half)
1 cup shredded carrot
1/2 cup sliced pitted ripe olives
1 recipe Chile Dressing
3/4 cup crushed tortilla chips

Place the lettuce in a large 2-quart salad bowl. Layer ingredients in the following order: cheese, beans, chicken, tomatoes, carrots, & olives. Spread Chile Dressing evenly over salad, sealing to edge of bowl. Cover salad tightly with plastic wrap. Chill for 4-24 hours. To serve, toss lightly to coat evenly & sprinkle with crushed tortilla chips.

Chile Dressing: In a small bowl stir together 1/2 cup mayonnaise or salad dressing, one 4-ounce can chopped green Chile peppers, 1 1/2 teaspoons chili powder, and 1 clove garlic, minced. Makes 3/4 cup.

Note: Chilling the salad for up to 24 hours allows the flavors to blend. Layer the ingredients one evening and have a read-to-serve meal the next. 

Prep: 30 minutes Chill: 4-24 hours Makes: 4 main-dish servings


Mom said...

Thanks for reminding me (in your sweet way) of this yummy recipe. These salad ideas are the way to go as our hot summer continues and continues and continues. You've inspired me and I thank you ;)

Love you,


Savories of Life said...

I love salads. Infact I put uo a taco salad on my blog last month. Do come over and follow me.

Christie said...

This looks wonderful! Your foods always do! Now, I just need to make it! I get in a rut and eat the same things! Blogs always take time to 'take off!' I link to a bunch of parties and that has drawn some followers. There are SO many food links that you should link every week to! Let me know if you don't know and I will send you some! Thank you for your encouraging words! Christie at Three Pixie Lane

Christie said...

I googled 'Food Blog Link parties' and here is a site that is having a link party NOW to advertise sites that have food link parties! Click on the ones that have linked and see when their food parties are. Make a list of when they are and you can link up! There is probably one just about every day. A big one is on Friday called Food by Gollum I think is the name. Here is the site for the link party above: http://momscrazycooking.blogspot.com/p/blog-hop-party-list-link-up.html

Good luck! I love the link parties and ALWAYS get such great ideas from the other visitors! Christie

Christie said...

Sorry Gail! Now, I am going to overwhelm you! I visit this link party weekly and they have a food link going on right now! http://allthingzrelated.blogspot.com/

You can link food or a craft! Christie