Fall is definitely in the air as we woke this morning to temperatures of 56 degrees.
But, I love the Fall!
For me, it's a great time of year with the colorful foliage, cool days with warm breezes, and the big 3...Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas.
To savor the last few weeks of summer, we made a wonderfully delicious salad for dinner that have touches of summer and Fall namely, the last of our garden's cherry tomatoes and cilantro and some freshly picked granny apples from one of the local area farms.
Back a few months ago when I was traveling with my son, looking at colleges, I enjoyed a salad similar to this. When I came home, I was able to create the salad dressing and then added the original salad ingredients plus a few of my own. You could probably call this a "throw in the kitchen sink" salad as you can add some of your favorites also.
Most of the salads we enjoy have the balance of good greens, a meat or protein, vegetables, fruits, cheese, nuts and a dressing that ROCKS! That's probably why we order so many salads at restaurants and don't necessarily recreate them at home.
So to that balance, I give you a Chicken Salad with Green Apples and Avocados and a Honey Lime Cilantro Dressing. (The Honey Lime Cilantro dressing ROCKS!) This is easy to put together and allowed my family to mix and match what they liked into the salad. Rotisserie chicken, apples, avocados, dried cranberries, sugared walnuts and crumbled goat cheese, were the products of choice so I let them mix and match to their likings. Think of the endless possibilities if you added strawberries, grapes, oranges, feta cheese, sliced almonds, celery, carrots...find your flavors and mix away.
What is your favorite ingredients in a salad? And what kind of salad dressing makes it all come together?
1 - 2-3 lb. rotisserie chicken, chopped or torn into bite size pieces
1- 12 ounce container of baby spring mix greens
2 avocados, cut into 1 inch pieces
2 green apples, cut into 1 inch pieces
1 package of cherry tomatoes, sliced in half
1- 6 ounce container of crumbled goat cheese
1 package of dried cranberries (Craisins)
1 package of sugared walnuts
4 tablespoons of honey
Juice of 2 freshly squeezed limes
1 tablespoon of lime rind
3 tablespoons of fresh cilantro, chopped
1/2 cup of olive oil
2 tablespoons of red wine vinegar
salt and pepper to taste
Place greens into individual bowls, add chicken, apples, avocado, cherry tomatoes, dried cranberries, goat cheese and sugared walnuts. Add a few tablespoons of dressing to cover the mixture. This salad can feed 4-6 people.