This tasty salad combines antioxidant-rich watercress, protein-packed chicken and pecans and K2-rich goat cheese for a delectable and healthy meal. It can easily be prepared the night before as a convenient lunch for work or school.
Watercress and Baby Arugula with Chicken, Goat Cheese and Pecans
- 1 cup pecans
- 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons sherry vinegar
- 4 teaspoons Dijon mustard
- 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 1 cooked rotisserie chicken, warm or at room temperature
- 9 cups loosely packed watercress, cut into 2- to 3-inch pieces
- 6 cups fresh baby arugula
- 3 cups torn fresh dandelion greens
- 1/2 red onion, sliced lengthwise into very thin strips
- 1 cup brined olives, such as nicoise or kalamata
- 1/3 cup brined capers, drained
- 8 ounces fresh goat cheese (may substitute feta cheese)
- Preheat the oven to 350F.
- In a small bowl, combine the pecans with the 2 tablespoons olive oil and a good pinch of salt. Spread the pecans in a single layer on a baking sheet and toast for 10 to 14 minutes. Remove and set aside to cool slightly.
- While the nuts are cooling, prepare the dressing: Pour the remaining 1/2 cup olive oil into a medium bowl. Whisk in the sherry vinegar, then the mustard. Whisk in the thyme, oregano, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and several grinds of pepper. Taste, and adjust the seasoning as desired.
- Remove the legs and breasts from the chicken. Remove the skin, and chop the meat into coarse cubes. Set aside.
- Combine the watercress, arugula, and dandelion greens in a large bowl. Toss in the red onion, olives, and capers, and then dress with 1/2 cup of dressing. Toss the salad, adding more dressing as desired. Toss in the cubed chicken.
- Divide the salad among 8 plates. Crumble the goat cheese in large chunks over the salads, and then sprinkle with the pecans. Serve immediately.
What is your favorite healthy meal to prepare ahead of time and take to work?