Wherever you are, I hope that things that are slowly winding down and that holiday mode is setting in. Or at the very least that there is light at the end of the tunnel in the mad rush to get everything finished before the end of the year!
This is a time of year to indulge and enjoy favourite treats (look out for two sweet Festive recipes coming to the blog later this month), but in this hot weather and in between the feasting I usually start to crave something green and crunchy. I am loving my salads at the moment and right now my favourite ingredients are roasted veggies (balsamic roasted beetroot in particular, delish!) with crunchy organic leaves, feta and pumpkin seeds. Quick - tick! Easy - tick! Healthy - tick!
Today's recipe is a light but filling dish, ideal for lazy lunches or summer dinners outside. The components do require a bit more time and effort than your typical thrown together green salad and this is the kind of thing I would make on a weekend rather than the busy week.
I love a sprinkling of balsamic vinegar over a salad but you can use your favourite dressing for this recipe. If you would like to make your own I can highly recommend this salad dressing recipe by Tandy over at Lavender and Lime - I have tried it and it is so delicious, much tastier than anything store-bought.
SUMMER CHICKEN GOUJON SALAD
150g cherry tomatoes
olive oil for drizzling
500g cubed butternut
30g finely grated parmesan cheese
2 chicken breast fillets
1 large egg, lightly beaten
20g flaked almonds
150g mixed leaves
balsamic vinegar or salad dressing
Step 1.) Preheat your oven to 200°C and place the whole cherry tomatoes on a small baking tray. Drizzle with some olive oil and roast for 10 minutes, until soft and the skins are cracking.
Step 2.) Turn the oven down to 190°C. Place the butternut cubes on a tray and drizzle with olive oil. Season with salt and pepper and cover the tray with foil. Roast the butternut for 35-40 minutes until tender. Remove from the oven and set aside.
Step 3.) Combine the breadcrumbs, parmesan cheese and a good grinding of salt and pepper in a small bowl. Cut the chicken fillets into thin strips approximately 5cm long. Toss the strips in the flour to coat evenly. Then gently toss the dusted the chicken strips in the egg ensuring that they are completely coated.
Step 4.) Dip the chicken pieces into the breadcrumb mixture to coat, (I find it easiest to coat them individually). Arrange the crumbed chicken pieces in a single layer on a baking tray and drizzle with olive oil. Bake the goujons at 190°C for 15 minutes. Turn the goujons over and bake for a further 5-10 minutes until cooked through.
Step 5.) Place the flaked almonds in a small, dry saucepan over a medium heat. Stir regularly until the almonds are golden and toasted (this will just take a few minutes), then set aside.
Step 6.) To assemble the salad: arrange the mixed leaves on a large platter. Arrange the goujons, roasted butternut and tomatoes on top. Sprinkle with toasted almonds and drizzle with balsamic vinegar, or your favourite dressing.