Wild rice, Chicken, Sweet Potato, Cashew Arugula Salad

wild rice salad (83) WM

I love adding wild rice to my salads, I am now a believer in adding sweet potatoes to my salads too!  Did you know that wild rice isn’t actually rice?  It is actually four species of grasses forming the genus zizania and the grain which can be harvested from them.  

 

Chicken Marinade:

3-4 chicken breasts, sliced into fourths

1/2 cup orange juice

1/2 cup balsamic vinegar

1/4 cup honey

1/2 teaspoon red chili powder

pinch of salt

wild rice salad (43) WM

Salad Ingredients:

cooked wild rice (we used 2 cups uncooked, this was too much)

1 sweet potato

Arugula

cashew pieces

dried cranberries

olive oil

salt

pepper

 

Dressing:

2 lemons, squeezed

1/3 cup olive oil

2 tablespoons honey

2 garlic cloves, crushed

1/4 teaspoon salt

 

Directions:

1) Combine the ingredients for the marinade (minus the chicken) and boil on medium heat for about 10 minutes until the sauce becomes thick.  Cool for about 10 minutes and pour over the chicken pieces.  Marinade for at least 1 hour (which should be the amount of time it takes to prepare the rest of the meal) or overnight.

2) Cook the wild rice.

3) Heat your oven to 375 degrees F.  Peel the sweet potato and cut into 1/4″ squares.  Place into a baking dish drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt/pepper, stir to coat.  Bake for about 30-40 minutes stirring every 10 minutes to make sure the sweet potatoes do not burn.  Once they are cooked through remove from the oven and set aside.

4) Combine all ingredients for the dressing and place in an airtight container so you can shake and combine the ingredients more easily.

5) Cook the chicken pieces in a medium-high heat skillet pouring in the marinade.

6) Once the rice/chicken are cooked, place a handful of arugula on each plate, place a scoop of rice on top of that, add a few pieces of chicken, and top with the sweet potato pieces, cashew pieces, dried cranberries and sprinkle with the lemon honey dressing.

wild rice salad (80) WM

Braised Mediterranean Chicken

braised mediterranean chicken (2) WM

I have so many posts that I need to catch up on, it’s ridiculous.  I made this dish awhile ago, and as always it was pretty darn tasty.  And I always I made some substitutions from the original recipe and made it my own.

braised mediterranean chicken (3) WM

prep time: 25 minutes

cooking time:  75 minutes

Ingredients:

  • chicken thighs (enough to serve those who are eating, up to 6 pieces otherwise add more of the other ingredients)
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 3 cloves of smashed garlic (squeezed in a garlic press or minced)
  • 1/2 cup Marsala wine
  • 1 lemon, sliced + a couple of slices for garnishing when serving
  • handful of cherry tomatoes
  • handful of dried cranberries
  • small container of mixed olives from the olive bar
  • handful of sun-dried tomatoes, chopped coarsely
  • a few sprigs fresh thyme
  • extra virgin olive oil

Directions:

1. Combine the salt, pepper, paprika, and garlic.

2. Make a few cuts on the sides of the chicken.

3. Rub chicken with crushed garlic, paprika, salt & pepper.  Let sit for 15 minutes.

4. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

5. Heat the extra virgin olive oil in a cast iron pan on  medium heat; cook chicken with skin side down and brown for about 10 minutes.  Flip to cook the other side and cook for an additional 10 minutes.

6. Pour in the Marsala wine and turn up the heat to high until alcohol evaporates.

7. Add lemon slices, cherry tomatoes, sun-dried tomatoes, olives, cranberries and thyme.  Reduce the heat to and simmer for 5 minutes.

8. Transfer pan to the pre-heated oven.  Cook for 45 minutes or until chicken turns golden brown.  While cooking, baste the sauce over the chicken.

9. Serve with regular or Israeli couscous and garnish with fresh lemon slices.

braised mediterranean chicken (4) WM

Quinoa, Cucumber, Olive, and Feta salad

quinoa salad WM

I love fresh summer salads, and quinoa is a great base for various types of salads with lots of yummy ingredients – a simple olive oil dressing is all that it needs.

Ingredients:

1 cup quinoa (2 cups water)

2 lemons, juiced

3 tablespoons olive oil

red onion

green onion

half cucumber

feta cheese

olive mix from the olive bar at the grocery store

garlic (I used marinated and roasted/marinated garlic from the olive bar at the grocery store)

tomatoes – red and yellow – sliced

salt and pepper to taste

quinoa salad 2 WM

look at this great olive and garlic mixture!

Directions:

1. Cook the quinoa according to the package instructions; let cool.

2. Juice the lemons.  Slice the red onion, green onion, cucumber, the olive and garlic mix, and tomatoes.

3. Combine the lemon juice and olive oil and pour over the cooled quinoa. Add the sliced veggies and olive/garlic, salt and pepper to taste.

4. Serve cold with BBQ or any other main dish!