There's always a stack of cookbooks and magazines on the night table. Other people read novels. I read cookbooks and magazines. So when Suzy from Kitchen Bouquet decided to have a Magazine Challenge a while back, I jumped in with both spatula's! She just posted another Great Cooking Magazine Challenge and I'm joining in again!
The August issue of La Cucina Italiana had a very easy recipe for a Chicken Salad. It looked great in the magazine. Great way to use up a leftover roast chicken, or a store bought rotisserie. But of course we didn't have roast chicken or a rotisserie chicken when I decided I had to have this for lunch. But lucky me, I did have grilled chicken strips leftover from Trader Joe's. The Picky One likes that for lunch sometimes in a salad, good to have on hand. It worked out great! We loved this salad. This one is definitely a keeper!
Marjoram? Not something I have lying around the spice cabinet, or out in the garden even! But I do happen to be growing tarragon, which I love. And oregano, which I like. I just happen to love fresh tarragon more! So I assumed tarragon made a really nice sub! It did, but when I looked up marjoram, the site mentioned that fresh oregano is a good sub for it. So I put a little in as well. I will look into growing marjoram next summer. I just happen to have a whole bunch of Meyer lemons in the freezer, so I grabbed a couple and thawed them in the microwave with a couple of 30 seconds bursts! Great way to always have a lemon or lime on hand is to freeze them whole and zap them in micro when you need one or two.
The salad was delicious, really bursting with a lot of flavor! I used a red bell pepper in addition to a yellow pepper to give it a little more color. Also threw in some diced red onion just because I love red onion in a salad. The grilled chicken gave it a lot of flavor. And just an extra squeeze of lemon juice made the flavor really pop! Yep, making this one again for sure!
Chicken and Yellow Pepper Salad
(insalata di pollo arrosto e peperoni gialli)
Source: adapted from La Cucina Italiana, August 2010
zest of one of the lemons (strips)
2 cups small shreds of skinless roast or grilled chicken
1/2 small red onion, chopped in small dice
1 yellow and 1 red, or orange, bell pepper, cut into 3/4-inch cubes (2 peppers, any color!)
7 ounces (about 1 1/2 cups) Parmigiano-Reggiano or similar type cheese, cut into shards
4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons fresh tarragon leaves, and or marjoram, oregano, whatever you like
salt and freshly ground black pepper
Using a sharp paring knife, trim off top and bottom of lemons. Stand fruit on end and carefully cut the peel and white pith from flesh, reserve the peel, following curve of fruit from top to bottom. Trim away any remaining pith. Cut each section away from membranes, cutting as close to membranes as you can, then cut fruit pieces in half crosswise, and cut again in smaller pieces, and place in a large bowl. I squeezed a bit of the lemon juice into the bowl, too!
In the bowl with the lemons and zest, add the chicken, bell peppers, onion and cheese. Add oil, tarragon leaves and salt and pepper, to taste; toss to combine.