Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Grilled Chicken Caesar Salad

I love Chicken Caesar Salad. It is one of my favorite things to order whenever we go out to eat. But I rarely made them at home, and I am not sure why. I decided that needed to change and I created a perfect Caesar salad with homemade croutons and dressing. It is so delicious and it was simple to make. There are a few steps involved here, but none of them are complicated. If you want to cut back on time, use store bought croutons or salad dressing. There are no set rules, so change things up so they work for you.

Grilled Chicken Caesar Salad
For the croutons:
2-3 pieces of day old bread
1 Tbsp butter
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tsp dried parsley

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Make sure your bread is a tad stale, or hard. This is perfect, because it seems we always have the heel of the bread kicking around in a plastic bag on the counter. Feel free to use any kind of bread or leftover rolls, or even bagels!
Slice the bread into 1 inch cubes.
In a small skillet, over low heat, melt the butter with the oil, and add the minced garlic. You are basically infusing the oil with the yummy garlic flavor, which will in turn flavor the croutons. Once you can smell the garlic, turn off the heat.
Add the cubed bread and the dried parsley. Mix well, adding a drizzle more of oil if needed to coat the bread. Spread in a single layer on a baking sheet and cook for 10-12 minutes, or until golden brown.
Set aside.
For the Caesar dressing:
1/2 cup of real mayonnaise
1 Tbsp white wine vinegar
1 Tbsp of freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 tsp of minced garlic
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
pinch of salt and pepper
2 Tbsp shredded Parmesan cheese
Mix all the ingredients in a small bowl with a wire whisk. Taste to be sure the flavors are right, you might need to add a dash more of lemon juice or vinegar. You can use anchovies in place of the Worcestershire sauce but I find this is faster and easier, and usually in my fridge.
Place the dressing in the fridge while you make the chicken.
For the Chicken and Salad:
2 to 3 boneless skinless chicken breast halves
2 Tbsp olive oil
Montreal Steak Seasoning
1 Tbsp lemon juice
Romaine lettuce
1/4 cup shredded Parmesan CheeseFillet the chicken breasts in half using a sharp knife.

Season the chicken fillets with olive oil and a shake of Montreal Steak Seasoning. Now this might sound odd to use steak seasoning on chicken, but trust me, it is the perfect choice. It gives the chicken a nice kick of flavor. It is my favorite way to flavor chicken when I grill it.
These are nice and thin, so they will cook quickly on your indoor grill pan, or outdoor grill.
Heat your grill pan over medium high heat and spray with nonstick cooking spray. Place the chicken seasoned side down in the pan. Season the top side with the olive oil and steak seasoning. Cook for about 4 to 5 minutes.
Flip chicken over and continue cooking until the center is no longer pink. Drizzle another squeeze of lemon juice over the chicken while it is the pan for added flavor.
Let the chicken rest on the cutting board while you prepare the salad. Tear or slice the lettuce and place in a large bowl with the Parmesan cheese and the croutons. Slice the chicken on a slight diagonal into thin slices and place on top of the salad.You can toss with the salad dressing if you would like, but I prefer to serve the dressing alongside, so each person can do their own. This also "saves" the salad so you eat the leftovers the next day.
This grilled chicken is so tasty. It is full of flavor and tang and perfect on any salad really, or even in a sandwich.
Plate your salad and drizzle with the homemade Caesar dressing. The dressing was so good that when we ran out of salad, we dipped out pita bread right into the dressing. Yum-o. Sorry for pulling a Rachael but that was the best word to describe the incredible taste. I will never buy bottled Caesar dressing again.
Sometimes you take a risk in the kitchen to re-create a restaurant favorite. Sometimes it doesn't work out, but this time is really did. I am looking forward to making this with freshly grown garden lettuce this summer.

Enjoy!

3 comments:

  1. Mmmmm! One of my favorite meals, also. It always tastes so good!

    ReplyDelete
  2. I've been looking for a good caesar recipe that doesn't have anchovies, so thank you!! Also, love the new look of your site.

    ReplyDelete
  3. That chicken looks so good! And the croutons alone will make it worth it...Thanks!

    Tracey @ www.LifeIsDifferentHere.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete

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